Marking the first anniversary of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), the SEIU is releasing a new report today analyzing the social and economic impact of the Recovery Act. This report explains what the aggregate numbers on economic growth and job creation fail to illustrate--how the Recovery Act helped counter the recession by protecting human services and the workers employed to deliver those services at a local level.
Reporting by state recipients of Recovery Act direct government investment spending demonstrates that this spending has saved or created 1,239,437 jobs in both the public and private sector. When you include the impact of indirect spending--jobs created or saved as a result of the consumer spending of directly funded job holders--the total rises to 1,859,156 jobs that have been saved or created. Pretty amazing. Without it, the unemployment rate in December 2009 may have reached 11.2 percent, 1.2 percent higher than the actual rate of 10.0 percent that month.
While it would be impossible to describe all of the significant findings of this report in just one blog post, I'll be doing just that in a series of blog posts at SEIU.orgover the next couple of days. I'll also be highlighting the stories included in this report--collected from a combination of public sources, government Web sites, and interviews with SEIU state-level leaders--which uniquely illustrate how states and some local units of government have used ARRA resources to limit scaling back.
For workers like Akbar Chatman--a substance abuse counselor for the Department of Mental Health in Los Angeles County--the Recovery Act played a critical role in helping him do his job. Watch:
While conditions are far better than they would have been without the stimulus fund actions that were taken, it is clear that substantial challenges remain. Without additional fiscal relief, new budget gaps could force state governments to shed 900,000 jobs this year.
» View the report in full at http://seiu.me/arra
» Download the (PDF) report:
"How Recovery Act Investments in Human Services Created and Saved Hundreds of Thousands of Jobs"