Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva today released the following statement on the newly announced April jobs figures:
“The economy created 290,000 jobs last month, the largest number in four years. April was the fourth consecutive month of growth, and consumer confidence is increasing. While all of this is good news, much more has to be done before the economy is truly working again for the American people.
Yesterday, the House of Representatives passed a proposal to create jobs in the manufacturing and construction sectors by offering rebates to upgrade household energy efficiency. More of these initiatives, big and small, will be necessary over the next several months. We need to put people back to work and create a sustainable economy. The new jobs report includes troubling signs of a employment market that will not meet the needs of the population, even when it gets back on its feet: the unemployment rate for teenagers (25.4 percent) must come down soon, and the number of ‘long-term unemployed’ who have been out of work for more than 26 weeks continued to trend up over the month, reaching 6.7 million. As we seek to build on recent successes, we must not forget that large segments of the population are still hurting in this economy, and future policy measures cannot leave them behind.
I am a co-sponsor of HR 4812, the Local Jobs for America Act, and I believe we need to take up this and other legislation without delay. Americans want to get to work, and lawmakers should step in as often as possible to make that happen. We should remember that the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) has been a crucial economic driver since its passage, and communities all over the country are seeing the benefits. We need more jobs bills that create the same kinds of possibilities for work, education and infrastructure improvements. I look forward to working with Speaker Pelosi and other leaders to make sure Congress addresses the issue in a comprehensive and responsible way, and I will continue to urge the White House to keep the economy in focus as we head toward election season.”