On Monday at 5:30 p.m., members of the Colorado Springs NAACPchapter will be conducting a prayer vigil for "a living wage and civil and human rights in solidarity with working families, public employees and union members across Colorado and the country." They will be gathering on the west side of City Hall, at the corner of Nevada Avenue and Kiowa Street.
There is plenty of need for prayer — and essential reform — to support Colorado's poor and working class as we found in this week's cover story by J. Adrian Stanley.
And there's no guarantee of finding even a minimum-wage job in this economy. In February, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, unemployment in the Colorado Springs area hit 10.5 percent, meaning around 32,000 people are without jobs here.
Colorado Springs is definitely not alone in the grim reality facing the lower clsases, as the New York Times reported yesterday.
The Labor Department will release its monthly snapshot of the job market on Friday, and economists expect it to show that the nation’s employers added about 190,000 jobs in March. With an unemployment rate that has been stubbornly stuck near 9 percent, those workers could be considered lucky.
But many of the jobs being added in retail, hospitality and home health care, to name a few categories, are unlikely to pay enough for workers to cover the cost of fundamentals like housing, utilities, food, health care, transportation and, in the case of working parents, child care.