Monday, May 16

Changing the outlook on unemployment is “indispensable”, argue associations

Feeling of being perceived as a “ball”, of “no longer being worth anything”, “shame” …: it is “essential” to change your outlook on unemployment, pleads a collective of associations in a constructed white paper from Words of Unemployed released Tuesday.

The 20 associations that make up this group, including New Solidarities Facing Unemployment (SNC), ATD Fourth World, the National Movement of Unemployed and Precarious Workers (MNCP) and Territories Zero Long-Term Unemployed (TZCLD), intend to challenge candidates for the President on this need to “crack” the wall of prejudice.

They note that the election campaign is “a good time” for a “change of discourse”, while the country still has more than 5.6 million job seekers (categories A, B and C), according to the latest figures. officials.

The collected words, articulated around five chapters, focus a lot, explain the authors, “on the weaknesses of the current system of support for the unemployed, the indifference of public opinion, but also the desires, the capacities” of the researchers of ‘use.

They want to “be heard”, while the health crisis means that they are “doubly penalized” and that the unemployment insurance reform “will worsen their situation”, underline the associations.

The negative view of them “plays a big part” on their motivation, notes the white paper, reporting for example the testimony of an unemployed person for whom “the gaze of people is so unbearable”, another pleading that it is necessary to stop to make them feel guilty “by implying that they are lazy or incompetent”.

Yet the unemployed “remain active people”, engaged in associations, private lessons, forming, underline the associations, which denounce a “stereotype of immobility and confinement”.

“I schedule my days as if I were at work,” said one, “not a day goes by without me being on my computer from 8 a.m. to consult job offers,” said the other.

– “Dehumanisation” –

But their motivation “withers over time”, and “it is urgent” that the question of the speed of care be dealt with, underlines the white paper, also deploring a “dehumanization of the procedures”, several job seekers claiming to be tired of having to deal with “machines”.

Job seekers are in demand for “tailor-made support and a look of confidence to remobilize themselves, more than technical support”. They take a critical look at the institutions that support them, including Pôle emploi: “these actors are a nebula”, “beside the plate”, “overwhelmed” advisers …

They also report that “the longer the period of unemployment, the greater the effects of unemployment on health”, an “essential” issue for the associations, which also address the themes of age, mobility or even wages.

To improve the situation, the authors formulate a series of proposals: organize a national campaign to “upgrade” the image of job seekers, better recognize the support role of associations, or even offer free access to psychological help. .

The collective, whose management is provided by the Christian Committee for Solidarity with the Unemployed (CCSC), also evokes the idea of ​​​​making the fight against unemployment a “great national cause”.

The white paper “Words of the unemployed” is based on a survey carried out mainly between February and June 2021 among people who are unemployed or have recently been unemployed, a population with a “habitual reluctance” to express themselves.

A questionnaire was drawn up – collecting 270 responses – and discussion groups made it possible to obtain additional expressions, the health crisis having limited the number of returns, explain the authors.

Three quarters of the respondents to the questionnaire “are at Bac+3 level” and the panel is therefore not characteristic of the general sociology of job seekers, a situation that the collective “assumes”, arguing that the results converge with “a lot of preliminary work”.

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