The Department of Labor reported this morning that new claims for unemployment benefits increased by 27,000 last week, reaching their highest level since 1992. Those continuing on unemployment rose to just over 4 million, the highest level since 1982.
On the heels of this news, Bush spokesperson Dana Perino announced the president has changed his position and will sign an unemployment benefits extension, if one reaches his desk before the end of hs term. That's the same extension he dismissed as "fiscally irresponsible" only yesterday.
Congress is expected to consider a bill to extend benefits, but they have to act today or tomorrow before the current lame duck session is adjourned for the year.
Whoever is selected to be our next Secretary of Labor will have a big job ahead. It's an important cabinet position that seems to be flying under the radar of the mainstream media. Here at Workforce Developments, we'll be watching closely.