Immigrant Entrepreneurship Drives Business Creation, Creates Opportunities

[Immigrants] are more than twice as likely to start businesses as their native-born counterparts. They are responsible for over a quarter of all new business formation--and new businesses have been the only source of net job creation in this country for the past 30 years. –Time Magazine Since moving people out of poverty through employment [...]

Federal Policy Change Could Negatively Impact SNAP

Earlier in January, the Chicago Tribune ran an article about big potential changes coming to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), and how they could drastically change the face of food access in Illinois. While nothing has been confirmed, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin), Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, has proposed the possibility of [...]

Report from Center for American Progress: A Progressive Agenda for Inclusive and Diverse Entrepreneurship

Earlier this month, the Center for American Progress (CAP) released a new report: A Progressive Agenda for Inclusive and Diverse Entrepreneurship. Although entrepreneurship is a promising avenue for job creation and increasing income, structural and economic barriers have prevented women and people of color from having equitable access to necessary resources for starting businesses. In [...]

ACS Poverty Data Shows Increase in Household Income, Decrease in Poverty

Earlier this month, the US Census Bureau released the collected data from their American Community Survey (ACS). The ACS results present yearly data on poverty & wage earnings in the United States, as well as localized information for cities and metro areas. This year, the ACS data reports that for 2015, across the board, household [...]

SNAP Time-Limit Waiver Renewal in Question, Could Impact 200,000 Residents

This December, Illinois’ SNAP time limit waiver will expire, and if the governor’s office does not apply for renewal, 200,000 Illinois residents could lose their SNAP benefits, and the state could lose $330 million in federal funding. What’s the SNAP time limit? And what’s this waiver? SNAP, or the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, is a [...]

Chicago Urban League Releases Blueprint for an Equitable Chicago

Earlier this month, the Chicago Urban League released a ten-year plan for their work towards racial equity in Chicago. The blueprint outlines an ambitious strategic plan that stands on three pillars—education, employment, and economic development. Ultimately, the Urban League’s goal is to deconstruct “structural racism and create more equitable educational, employment and economic systems for [...]

“Homes and Jobs: Better Together” A Snapshot of the Destination: Jobs Survey

In Chicago, less than 20% of individuals who exit the homeless service system experience increased income from employment. There is a great need to ensure that unstably housed clients have access to the resources that will help them take advantage of job opportunities that contribute to increased housing (and economic) security. Destination: Jobs is part [...]

Meeting the Challenge of Youth Unemployment

There have been numerous articles written recently regarding the state of youth and young adult unemployment in Chicago and the impact that it has on local communities, specifically on the south and west sides of the city. Black males in Chicago are out of work and school at far higher rates than their Hispanic and [...]

Demystifying Unemployment and Labor Force Participation

One of the most basic questions that economists try to answer is how many people are working. Each month the Department of Labor (DOL) and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) release a slew of data meant to represent the state of the US economy. The most familiar and often cited number is the unemployment [...]

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