Posts Tagged ‘jobs’

Law Schools Are Not the Only Ones Paying Employers to Hire

Apparently this past summer the Maryland state government implemented a program called H.I.R.E. Maryland [http://dllr.state.md.us/]. Should you be one of the lucky unemployed Marylanders there is hope:

“Resources for Job Seekers
Maryland’s Hiring Incentive Rebate for Employers (index.shtml) can be used as an incentive to encourage employers to hire unemployed indivisuals.”

Should you be one of the struggling small businesses that are struggling in Maryland due to high business taxes and insurance rates and payments on your Small Business Administration Loan behold the light:

“What is the tax credit?
• The Hiring Incentive Rebate for Employers is a tax credit available to Maryland businesses that hire qualified workers for newly-created or certain vacant positions in the State.
•Employers will receive a maximum credit of $5,000, for each qualified employee, up to $250,000.

How does an employer qualify?
•Employees must be Maryland residents as well as hired between March 25, 2010 and December 31, 2010.
•At the time of hire, individuals must be receiving unemployment insurance benefits or have exhausted their benefits in the previous 12 months and not working full-time immediately preceding the date of hire.
•Positions must be full-time as well as newly-created or have been vacant for at least 6 months.

Where can I get more information?
For more information, visit the DLLRwebsite (index.shtml) or one of the 34 One Stop Career Centers (../employment/onestops.shtml).” [sic]

So employers must create a position in order to get the tax credit. Note that the credit is up to $5,000. This means that the credit can range from $1 to $5,000. I am sure that the conditions are set to ensure that most potential employers won’t receive the maximum. Also, would an employer, especially a small business think it is worth it to create a position for $5,000?
In Maryland most businesses are blue-collar, mall-type or state or local government jobs. So let’s focus on the first two types since the latter aren’t likely included. An average worker probably makes about $25,000-$40,000 a year (I’m being generous in this economy). That means that the owner has to be creative enough to generate MORE business revenue to cover the new employee’s salary in a failing economy, meaning should he/she be unable to the business would actually create an additional debt of $20,000 to $40,000. A small business that is able to generate that much more revenue wouldn’t need the incentive of $5,000.

Any average person in the DC-metro area knows that Maryland has a faltering business or job market. What I find interesting is that when I read economic stress maps or news about the DC area the author continues to make references to market/employment gains.

Maryland is over populated, overdeveloped and over-run by mob transplants ready to pillage whatever resources the state has. Years ago many medical practitioners moved out of Maryland because their medical malpractice insurance was increased to such a level they could not operate any more. Maryland does not have the foresight to attract corporations like northern Virginia does. Maryland seems to be concerned with more condos and mcmansions than how anyone can pay for it. It appears that many workers in Maryland are commuters from Philadelphia and Delaware, while many (professionals) commute to Washington, DC like northern Viriginians for employment. I doubt that this hiring incentive had any real impact for the unemployment rate overall, especially for displaced professionals.

In the News: Smart People Halt Going to Law School

 

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The Smarties Aren’t Rushing to Law School – The Careerist (full article) July 15, 2010

It’s madness. It’s loopy. How else to explain the spike in law school applications — a 7 percent surge, according to

The National Law Journal? Hello — didn’t anyone hear about those 22,000 legal jobs that got wiped out last year? Why is everyone and their mother trying to get into law school — any law school? So far we’ve heard the terms, irrationale, fool-heartedly, unaware and now madness and loopy. These characterizations refer to the mindset of those who continue to ping their false hopes on attending law school. At this point those who are already members of the legal industry are diagnosing you with a being deranged or a mental illness, I’ll refer to it as psychosis. This is when a person does not deal with the reality of situations or circumstances and continue to operate and behave as though the reality they’re comfortable with is the reality that’s actually there.

So who’s not rushing to law school? Ironically, some of the nation’s most sought-after college graduates are spurning law school, even highly coveted ones–at least for now. [emphasis mine]. The author asserts that those applying to law school in this economy and particular shift in the legal industry are not doing so with diligence and research. You are considered to be haphazard in making a very important decision. Now 0Ls and first year law students are being referred to as unintelligent.

A few days ago, I queried what’s harder: getting a job in a big-name law firm or a seat at a prestigious kindergarten in Manhattan? Though I’d put my money in the kiddie pool, it turns out there’s another prize that might even beat out admission to a swanky private school — and that’s a junior position at Teach for America.  

The New York Times reports that the nonprofit education group received over 46,000 applications for 4,500 spots to teach at some of the nation’s most troubled schools. (Hat tip to ABA Blog.) The article is full of anecdotes of students at highly selective colleges who got dinged by Teach for America. But what was really interesting is that many of the students in the article said that they’d rather teach than go directly to law school, including some who had gotten into places like Harvard Law School.  Earlier this year it was the U.S. Census that witnessed a unprecedented spike in temporary employment applications, with lawyers and Ph.D graduates at the helm. Teach for America is the runner-up for sought after position? This is interesting as far as law graduates who are now directing their attention to more meaningful, less paying work; though by the general public are perceived as money-grubbing-fast talkers. Let’s face it, not everyone who went to law school had greed in their hearts, though they did think that law school was the easier method for financial stability, many creative people are in business and law. These persons have sometimes found a way to escape the legal industry and focus on their creative outlet while sustaining a living. Some posts about these people may give some hope about leading your own path out of law.

But before you get all misty-eyed about the altruism of America’s youth, consider this: A stint with Teach for America is an instant resume enhancer. That it’s now become so competitive to get into the program can only add to the glow of those who have made the cut. Of course, when the market contracts, different careers either become extinct or more competitive as a shift in applicants increase. I’ve also heard that Peace Corps is now competitive. You even have to prove that you are able to pay your student loans, credit cards or other loans (either off in their entirety or meet monthly payments) while you’re in some remote area with none of the comfortable Western amenities you’ve grown accustomed to.

Corporate America can’t seem to get enough of these elite do-gooders. I can’t tell you how many times partners at major firms tell me that their favorite interviewees are Teach for America alumni. Partners talk about them in glowing terms, citing their leadership skills, work ethic, and all-around wonderfulness. From the personalities I witnessed in law in general, I disagree that this is the majority of firms or higher-ups within firms and businesses.

If you think about it, the profile of a Teach for America alum is what every big firm would want — someone who went to the right school, worked for a couple of years in a challenging environment, and then had the good sense to get back on the corporate track. They are what big-firm lawyers like to fancy themselves to be: smart and thoughtful, but practical enough to keep their billables up. So if you’re interested in doing some good in the world, make sure to the best of your ability for altruistic reasons; should you do this type of program to get your foot in the door of big business, you STILL won’t be considered because you attended a TTT/TTTT. It’s really saying, that Teach for America would be an ADDITIONAL criteria along with graduating at the top of your class at an IVY League. Ha, the door is still shut for the majority in the legal industry.

It might be too cynical to suggest that Teach for America has become a magnet for those with legal or corporate ambitions, but big law firms certainly seem smitten with the credential.  Umm, references to the legal industry should be cynical, afterall that’s what law schools trains its students to be resulting in depressed, hyper-competitive, backstabbing patrons of the legal industry, all the while having the student loan monkey on your back.

A Somewhat Honest Letter from New Jersey Bar Association President: Law Profession and Minorities

Letter From The President Of The New Jersey State Bar Association; Published: July 05, 2010

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To The Readers Of The Metropolitan Corporate Counsel:

As members of the bar we represent a noble profession. Template characterization of the law field.

As we strive on behalf of our clients, we are also mindful of our obligation to improve the system of justice. This should extend to the members of the legal profession, those ‘officers of the court’ who have taken an exhorbitant amount of student loans with no system of justice looking out for their best interests as a whole.

The New Jersey State Bar Association is committed to addressing the issues that are critical to the profession and society.

Issues like the economy’s continued effects on our job market; the need to promote diversity in the legal community; the delivery of legal services, and our obligation to protect judicial independence. TTT/TTTT have no problem promoting diversity by being the primary institutions of U.S. legal education that will enroll minority students. Thus, those who had the ability to achieve and outperform are relegated to schools that have set them up for a future of disdainful looks and assumptions that the only reason they even attended law school, no matter how poor the ranking, was due to affirmative action.

Early this summer, I helped welcome over 100 new attorneys to the profession at a swearing-in event in Trenton. Each of them signed up for law school believing they would join a noble profession – a profession that would allow them to make a difference in society while earning a good living for their families. Unfortunately, the job market that greets them remains grim. [emphasis mine] Yet, the were struck by the harsh reality of the economy, closed doors, inadequate training and lack of opportunity. All the while working within the confines of this ‘noble’ profession: March 15, 2010

The Undertraining of Lawyers and Its Effects On The Advancement of Women and Minorities in the Legal Profession « Life’s Mockery

The state’s largest lawyers group is committed to assisting lawyers navigate these troubled times. We will continue to help lawyers get their practices up and running, and be a resource for those who have already hung out their own shingle. As someone who made the leap into solo practice 10 years ago, I know how the state bar can help lawyers make a transition. First, you begin by saying that the economy is bad, and that members of the legal industry have a an obligation to the law graduates and professionals. Then you encourage those minorities who aren’t afforded the opportunity to enter into decent job prospects to start their own firms with no substantial experience. They will need, escrow account, a separate interest bearing account (depends on jurisdiction) supplies, office for leasing, liability insurance, malpractice insurance, office supplies. The funds for the start up costs will likely emanate from small business loans (more debt and interest). Most businesses lose money their first year in operation. Most law students aren’t taught economics, finance or how to operate a business. Most law students aren’t graduating with practical skills to practice law and there are just too many attorneys. Since the economy remains grim, how do you expect these inexperienced lawyers to attract clientele for their small firm in which most will not be able to pay retainer or contingency fees. So, you encourage new lawyers to incur more debt, increase their professional risk in this bad economy. Most small to mid-size firms not only lose money but are often wiped out by BigLaw firms because they are unable to compete. It’s like these lawyers who do not know better or being set up for another fall with additional financial consequences.

While most lawyers have been hurt by the recession, there are signs that the diverse population in the bar has been especially hard hit. The economic crisis has reduced opportunities for minority lawyers and hampered the profession’s efforts to increase diversity. Yet, you encourage the just above mentioned approach. I know that these blogs have been sounding negative but with estimates that the job market will only worsen for the next couple of years and that the legal industry may see a slight improvement in a few years, it’s simply not a reasonable investment. They will make things worse for themselves.

This is not acceptable. Our great state – the most diverse in the nation – demands an equally diverse legal profession. In the coming months, the state bar association will convene a summit on diversity to examine the progress we have made and to chart a path forward toward the goal of a more inclusive profession. It’s about time, why don’t a national bar association do this?

An inclusive profession is powerful and meaningful in today’s increasingly global marketplace.  That’s a nice sentiment, but the reality is that it depends on who you ask.

It is true that the global marketplace has brought changes to nearly every business and profession, and the law is no different. So true, legal outsourcing to India via LPOs has changed the American legal industry. There is cause for concern about how these trends may diminish the importance of practicing lawyers – and the public’s access to quality legal services.

In order to better understand and respond, we will establish a task force on the future of the delivery of legal services, with an eye toward protecting the public and preserving our professional values.

When it comes to protecting the public, we are reminded how blessed we are in New Jersey to have one of the most respected state court systems in the nation. That is because it is an independent and impartial branch of government. We will continue to fight to preserve the sanctity of our justice system – because every judge in our courts and every resident of New Jersey deserve it. This is confusing. The letter begins by stating the need to protect the interests of attorneys who are affected by the downturn in the economy. I will have to assume that getting attorneys to open firms to represent clients somehow enhances the justice system. So the interest is moreso getting criminals legal representation while lawyers sink in a mire of debt with no one caring about their interests.

After all, this is what the bar association is about:  Examining the tough issues so you know what is at stake and offering insight about the path to take.

Unemployment Programs; Black Unemployment…

On May 11, 2010 I posted my thoughts on black unemployment and some organizations call for the United Nations to address black unemployment.  Well, the Economic Policy Institute presented a  more in depth statistical analysis: released: 

Uneven pain—Unemployment by metropolitan area and race dated June 8, 2010. Between this and another previous post we can conclude:  Blacks are the most affected by the economic recession and unemployment; thus will most likely be affected long-term socially. Ironically, Blacks and Latinos had an increased in education attainment but higher unemployment rates.

From the May 11, 2010 post [ United Nations: People are calling the international community to the plight of Black Unemployment] on this blog in which I quoted:  “But the ugly truth is that the road to success that the degree they’ve earned was supposed to open up is littered with potholes that their education cannot overcome. This year, blacks who have earned a bachelor’s degree and higher have a higher unemployment rate than whites who have only obtained a two-year college degree. And blacks with college degrees earn substantially less than white college graduates.” [ Black college graduates face road full of potholes, May 11, 2010, Statesman Journal updated version provided in a different website:  Black college graduates face a road ahead full of potholes | lancastereaglegazette.com | Lancaster Eagle Gazette ] Even with these facts and statistics I see not a regression but a potential full-blown manifestation of hatred as many of us have read in history. When a country is in decline which most obvious sign is its economy and international trade, those who are members of unpopular groups, you know those who are not deemed by dominant society as “one of us” will be blamed for it.

Let me state a brief insight: For minorities to try to do things the “right way” attain education, work towards a goal, only to be overlooked for a lesser educated white potential employment is psychologically damaging. It is a reminder that racism is inherent in American culture, government and politics. When push comes to shove, minorities as well as a few whites are expendables. This leaves a resounding whisper in the minds of those largely affected that “America has not changed.”

Should we assume that the abismal statistics provided by EPI are accurate, this gives additional insight to news regarding unemployment benefits. According to an article posted by the Huffington Post on June 14, 2010; more people continue to lose unemployment benefits due to Congress’ failure to extend it and other programs. [Uneven pain—Unemployment by metropolitan area and race].

As Blacks maintain the highest percentage of unemployment across the nation, rationally, they are the very ones who are relying on unemployment benefits for survival, though many are likely educated and not necessarily blue-collar workers. Simply fathoms the mind, for those who believed that they could taste the American Dream but only to be met with sometimes polite rebuffs that reinforces a cyclical society of unbalance and discrmination. I have read that some economists are expecting riots in urban areas because of the economic crisis. For those who believe that living in the suburbs shields them, let me remind you that plenty of Section 8 housing residents and others are spread throughout the suburbs and that some suburbs are dependent and surround major urban areas–you know where many professionals commute to work. It’s looking grim. Can you say Ecuador?

United Nations: People are calling the international community to the plight of Black Unemployment

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All I have to say is wow, it’s that bad:Group Wants UN Scrutiny Of U.S. Black Unemployment, April 26, 2010  http://www.citylimits.org/news/articles/3956/group-wants-un-scrutiny-of-u-s-black-unemployment

 As national attention is drawn to the bp oil spill, the President’s current Supreme Court nomination and home foreclosures, it seems that unemployment remains wisping in the wind. As I read one Associated Press article concerning white flight into the cities and basically because they’re there, now the cities are worthy of federal assistance, I cannot help but think that’s what happened with the housing crisis. When it affects a growing number of certain people, that’s when bailouts are necessary? Anyway, back to unemployment. It is 2010, though I will say living in the DC metro area I see on nearly a daily basis ignorant (behavior wise) blacks, they are those who are not just educated but actually attempt to conduct themselves professionally and remain delusionally hopeful that they will derive some benefit from the legal job market.

One news article just posted TODAY stated: “But the ugly truth is that the road to success that the degree they’ve earned was supposed to open up is littered with potholes that their education cannot overcome. This year, blacks who have earned a bachelor’s degree and higher have a higher unemployment rate than whites who have only obtained a two-year college degree. And blacks with college degrees earn substantially less than white college graduates.” [ Black college graduates face road full of potholes, May 11, 2010, http://www.statesmanjournal.com/article/20100511/OPINION/5110318/1049/OPINION ]. So just imagine black unemployed law graduates with additional student loan debt.

It is 2010-black unemployment is highest across the board throughout the nation. Apparently since the government and private sector does not care to risk employing the majority of black Americans, help from the international community is sought. The international community is powerless to do any thing.  Here are some viable options: 1) educated black women stop being single moms, no I’m not referring to those who are divorced, widowed or have an annulment, I ‘m referring to the superwoman mentality in which black women just want to be a mom and feel that a traditional family structure is out of there reach. I read statistically that women in urban areas who are single moms are likely to birth children who will live below the poverty level. Instead, marry a good guy from another country who is educated and not looking for a visa to remain in the country. That way you can get dual citizenship and maybe employed elsewhere while expanding your horizons. 2) Americans can start facing the reality that education is not the cure for society’s ills whether financial or social. The more debt people have, the worse their outlook of the world, the worst their social interactions, the more deranged members of so-called civilized society. The economic devastation is all too self-explanatory regarding: plummeting credit scores, high interest rates, living paycheck to paycheck, inability to do more things one enjoys, feeling trapped, and I truly believe that this contributes to most attorneys having low self esteem masked in a surreal ego for survivial. Other than those with mental and physical disabilities, and maybe those who are just inclined to be hateful, this would give some sort of perspective as to why contract attorneys are so deranged on assigned cases.

The international community in reality cannot force the federal government to fairly employ qualified citizens within their borders. Due to mutual respect of nations and international custom the only thing the international community can really do is put pressure on the United States which I doubt it will do,  through such mechanisms as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  Since most UN mechanisms have a two prong methodology: one can be a signatory of an instrument to say you agree with the contents but unless a particular nation ratifies it, the international community cannot bring it under it’s jurisdiction in a particular global forum.

With the overemphasis of free market and free trade…the fact that most black Americans aren’t considered worthy of respect,  the international community is not going to risk their financial and political stability by fighting on behalf of what many consider “the permanent underclass.” Should anyone know anything about Russia, Poland and Germany ummm African immigrants are not a priority and likely swept aside as a non-issue, just as the more indigenous Black Americans are in the U.S.

This post is bleak, I don’t have a solution. Most federal laws are more easily enforceable when the employer is an actual government entity versus a member of the private sector. The private sector runs the country, “big business”, lobbyists, loan generators, insurance companies and the Federal Reserve. These entities could care less about equal employment opportunities and fairness.

It’s time for a Civil Rights Movement revival, apparently this country has regressed to the era of the old guard.

Black Unemployment: “I Have Mine and You Have Yours to Get”

“I Have Mine and You Have Yours to Get.” This is the mentality of many Americans, but I find it significant among black Americans. Excluding the black upperclass, I notice a difference in the recruiting, networking and effort of minorities to help one another. This is likely due to several factors: 1) as in previous posts, “Blacks” have been disproportionately excluded from advancement in this country: municipal slavery, Black Codes, Jim Crow, institutionalized racism, ebbs and flow in the overall economy, difficulty in assimilating despite education advancement; 2) Blacks are reluctant to help one another, many are of the persuasion that they worked so hard to advance that if they recommend the wrong black person their job/job prospects will be damaged 3) Wealth: Those blacks who are wealthy see no purpose in helping middle class blacks, as it is ‘not their problem,’ so long as they can attend their 100 Black Men Meetings, Links Club meetings, send their children to ‘Jack and Jill’ and boat the existence of their fellow human beings suffering is of no consequence. As many of these wealthy blacks embody this mentality, on the rare, such as the former owner Bob Johnson who sold BET several years ago as he was satiated with the stereotype and redundancy of the music business. He started BJI Industries with the portfolio of seeking highly skilled black businessmen and women.

As various persons (Congressional Black Caucus, lawmakers) mail the U.S. President for resolution to the hardest hit population of the current economic crisis-Black Americans, it is a mystery whether an answer will be in the affirmative. The following are more stories concerning black unemployment:

Obama lobbied on black unemployment, immigration, March 11, 2010, http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE62A5OO20100311

DR. BOYCE: Obama Needs To Fix The Black Jobs Situation,  April 5, 2010, News One http://newsone.com/nation/boycewatkins/dr-boyce-obama-needs-to-fix-the-black-jobs-situation/

Obama ignores black joblessness at his own peril, April 06, 2010, http://www.istockanalyst.com/article/viewiStockNews/articleid/4004812
White Unemployment Goes Down as Black Unemployment Goes Up: Experts Explain Why, April 7, 2010, The Seattle Medium: http://www.seattlemedium.com/news/Article/Article.asp?NewsID=102405&sID=3&ItemSource=L
Was the recession more difficult for state’s people of color?, April 7, 2010, http://www.clarionledger.com/article/20100407/COL0412/4070313/1171/OPINION
This may be an opportunity for professional blacks to do what working class blacks did in the early 1900s when shut out of the greater society, create one’s one opportunities and reciprocate for the fellow man who suffers from the same trial.

Los Angeles Times: California unemployment rate holds steady at 12.5% (and attorneys are feeling it)

California unemployment rate holds steady at 12.5%

The economy may be leveling off, although job prospects in professional fields still appear bleak.

LABOR

March 27, 2010|By Marc Lifsher

http://articles.latimes.com/2010/mar/27/business/la-fi-cal-jobs27-2010mar27

Quote from a newspaper article: ” Though small, the professional sector — which includes lawyers, accountants, architects and economists — has been pummeled by the recession, more than in any other recent downturn.”

Did we really need a newspaper article to tell us this? Either you or a family member is living through this, though this article is specific to California. I will say this, as California’s current 12+% unemployment is one of the highest, and black unemployment across the sectors (including professionals) is at 15%, means California is not a good place for a minority to seek new opportunities or advance their careers.

Anyway, I find it interesting that most of the media outlets tend to focus on new graduates, new graduates gripe about competing against those with a decade of experience but no one seems to pay attention to those in between. You know the ones who aren’t elderly, have less than 15 years of experience but aren’t new to the meat market. These are the ones who have a harder time playing catch up because they are ALREADY expected to have gain some experience regardless of the market, tier of law school they attended or just facing the harsh reality of the legal industry.

“The latest recession differs from downturns in the early 1980s and 1990s because it “hits across sectors and across occupations,” said employment lawyer Michael Bernick at Sedgwick Detert Moran & Arnold in San Francisco. Then the article gets embolden by stating that the job market is improving as the economy does, how is this so when this is considered a “jobless recovery.” Logic please.

Here it is: “I don’t know of any law firm that is hiring people who don’t bring new business with them,” said Bernick, a former state employment agency director.” So the person likely to have a “book” of business that will advance a current firm’s portfolio are those with 20 years experience. Not those still building or attempting to gain any experience, this we already know, yet people STILL are attending law school in droves.

Prospects are even tougher for newly minted lawyers, said Darry Sragow, managing partner at Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal in Los Angeles. “We don’t hire people straight out of school,” he said.” Ahh the focus on new attorneys, what about the rest of us? It’s either poor newbie or poor IVY Leaguer. ‘All I want to say is that they don’t really care about us.’