Immigration Reform Clears Senate; $1.5 billion for Youth Jobs

Today, just after 4:00pm, the Senate voted to approve the bipartisan immigration reform bill. The over 1,000 page bill is not only good news for 11 million immigrants currently living in the U.S. illegally by providing a path to citizenship, but for youth ages 16-24. Included in the sweeping legislation is a $1.5 billion youth jobs amendment proposed by Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT).

The amendment, which is funded by charging a $10 fee on employers who hire guest workers, seeks to address the incredibly high youth unemployment rate across the United States. It does this by allocating $7.5 million to every state automatically and then distributes the remainder of the money to states and local workforce investment boards with the highest rates of youth unemployment.

This investment is meant to, “provide summer and year round employment opportunities for youth, with direct links to academic and occupational learning; and provide important services such as transportation and child care, necessary to enable young Americans to participate in job opportunities.” The last provision has stirred up some controversy with conservative groups who believe the language of “transportation” is too vague and could lead to providing youth with cars, bicycles, or other means of individual transportation. They even coined the amendment “Obamacar” as a result.

Senators Sanders' and Rubio’s spokespersons have each said that this accusation is a little ridiculous, just attempting to stir up controversy surrounding the amendment. Hopefully we can all agree the title “Obamacar” is a little clever, at least, however misdirected.

The Sanders youth jobs amendment is projected to create more than 400,000 jobs to WIA eligible youth over 2014-2015 for both summer and year-round employment. A quick fact sheet written by Senator Sander’s office on the amendment can be found here.

A Closer Look with Ross Seidman


Check back here to see the latest blog posts from Ross Seidman, The Corps Network's Government Relations and Development Intern. For each edition of our weekly newsletter, The Crewleader, Ross will contribute to the "A Closer Look with Ross Seidman" section with an anaylsis of a new article that is relevant to our membership and the Corps world. 


Date: June 27, 2013
Title: Immigration Reform Clears Senate; $1.5 Billion for Youth Jobs
Today, just after 4:00pm, the Senate voted to approve the bipartisan immigration reform bill. The over 1,000 page bill is not only good news for 11 million immigrants currently living in the U.S. illegally by providing a path to citizenship, but for youth ages 16-24. Included in the sweeping legislation is a $1.5 billion youth jobs amendment proposed by Senator Bernie Sanders (D-VT)...Read More

Date: June 24, 2013
Title: New CNCS study shows correlation between volunteering and employment

A few days ago the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) released findings of a study titled, “Volunteering as a Pathway to Employment.” This is the first ever study that has taken data to determine the impact that volunteering has on the likelihood of someone finding employment when they were previously out of work. The study, with much aid from the U.S. Census Bureau, sampled over 71,000 people from 2002-2012 to compile these relatively profound results...Read More

A Closer Look with Ross Seidman: New CNCS study shows correlation between volunteering and employment

A few days ago the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) released findings of a study titled, “Volunteering as a Pathway to Employment.” This is the first ever study that has taken data to determine the impact that volunteering has on the likelihood of someone finding employment when they were previously out of work. The study, with much aid from the U.S. Census Bureau, sampled over 71,000 people from 2002-2012 to compile these relatively profound results.

Included in the findings was the fact that volunteering actually increases the chances of someone out of work finding employment by 27%. In addition, when isolated for individuals without a high school diploma or living in rural areas the results jumped to a 51% and 55% increase in prospects for employment. Volunteering provides those engaged with social and human capital that they would otherwise be missing. The increase in volunteers’ networks, soft, and hard skills that make a substantial economic difference by their ability to find employment.

As youth unemployment persists at a rate if 16.2%, more than double that of the national average, these findings couldn’t be anymore timely. At a time when the federal budget is under intense scrutiny and the sequester is continuing to hit underserved American families, this study exemplifies the economic necessity to continue funding national service. As the Save Service Campaign continues to advocate against cuts to vital programs like AmeriCorps, it has never been more evident that this should be a bipartisan issue. National service has proven to be both fiscally and socially responsible.

The “Volunteering as a Pathway to Service Report” also supports the extensive benefits that each of our Corps members experience in all across the United States on a daily basis. Not only does service provide a great advantage to the community, but to the volunteers themselves. It is no wonder that studies have found that Millennials are the group most likely to volunteer in community projects. It could not be more crucial to not only maintain support for service programs like Corps all over the country, but increase the funding that would allow for an even broader community impact while providing volunteers with the social and human capital to succeed in the workforce.