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OPINION: Why unemployment benefits should end.

By Sean Lanigan

This past Labor Day put an end to enhanced federal unemployment benefits. While there is a concern because it sounds like a bad thing, it is widely believed that putting an end to the benefits will boost the economy. These economic benefits, of course, should not be ignored, but the other positives are just as important.

Having a job and working for money can give a person a tremendous sense of identity. The most common question when meeting new people is, "what do you do for a living?" It is usually the first question asked. Working is one of the ways people can challenge themselves on so many levels. Jobs can allow anyone to desire to learn more and stay social in the work environment with coworkers. Job training gives one’s mind constant stimulation that allows for learning. It is challenging to create that in the unemployment environment.

Most of the friends in my life have come from job settings. A person on unemployment may not have the same opportunities to make friends or meet the people in their life without that work setting compared to being on unemployment.

Every person in their life has to learn the importance of time management and balancing responsibilities. Employment teaches the art of work-life balance. The idea of routine and having a schedule is very important. Having a job creates a more structured life in terms of hours working and the amount of time off for recreation.

Union jobs can provide people with all sorts of benefits. When it comes to union jobs, people may think of health care, pension, annuity, and many others. Union jobs are available. In 2000, American workers who were union members were at 13.4%, and 20 years later, that number went down to 10.8%.

In today’s technological world, job seekers can even find free job training for certain jobs and certain fields. According to ABC27 and writer Dylan Abad, The Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry offer these kinds of programs to give people in Pennsylvania training to find secure jobs.

Personal development expert Jim Rohn once said, "either you run the day or the day runs you." Start looking for jobs on great websites such as LinkedIn and Indeed to learn some new skills, challenge yourself and make some new friends in the process. All that can be achieved through the art of working.

For another perspective on this issue, read Amy Guethlein's Commentary: "What Happens Once Unemployment Benefits End?"


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