Public-Sector Cuts Hurt Jobs Numbers

public-sector cuts to jobsThe private sector is creating new jobs! (Yeah!) which are being offset by cuts in public-sector jobs (Say what now?).

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities finds that states and localities cut 4,000 positions in January, including teachers, state police, public health employees, and child protective workers. Unfortunately, this is part of a trend that’s taken hold since the recession. State and local jobs are down 635,000 from where they were in August 2008.

Those who don’t like government often think of public-sector jobs as “not real jobs,” as if those workers didn’t provide needed services and their paychecks didn’t support their families and communities. That’s why it’s important for those of us who support the public sector be careful when we speak of government services. Often, when the quality of a public service goes down, nasty stereotypes about lazy workers start flying and we hear calls for further budget cuts. But take a look at the numbers—oftentimes it’s the reduction in staff and resources that makes it hard for the employees who are left to provide quality services. Supporting public services includes standing up for the people who provide them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *