ADA Urges an Investment in "Corps" Budget

   Washington, DC - 11/03/10 - Americans for Democratic Action urged Congress recently to drastically boost the funding for three federal programs that already train and employ tens of thousands of young adults --  the Peace Corps, the Job Corps, and AmeriCorps.
   Highlighting the nation’s 25 percent youth unemployment rate, the organization is calling for increased appropriations for the three youth-targeted programs.
   These programs provide a refuge, a sturdy first step, for young people emerging from both high school and college into the bleakest job market in 75 years,” ADA National Director Michael J. Wilson said in a letter to members of Congress.
   The Peace Corps allows Americans to serve their country by living and working in developing countries. Job Corps is a proven education and training program that helps young people learn a career, earn a high school diploma or GED, and find and keep a good job. AmeriCorps is a network of national service programs that engage Americans in intensive service to meet the nation’s critical needs in education, public safety, health, and the environment.
   Wilson called the three programs’ proposed combined funding of under $3 billion in next year’s budget “a short-sighted misallocation of resources at a time of pervasive unemployment, which imposes long-term damage not only to the jobless and their families, but to the economy and the very fabric of society.” The programs’ proposed funding represents less than one-tenth of one percent of next year’s proposed $3.8 trillion federal budget.
   "We can’t let the Great Recession steal the hopes and dreams of the next generation. Doubling the funding of these programs would be a boon to the aspirations of young adults across the nation." said Wilson. "Add this with the other job producing plans in Congress and we can provide more than jobs. We can provide service to our citizens and a path to the future."