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Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
3:57pm
Thu Jun 18, 2015

Brighter Job Prospects Predicted For U.S. Teens This Summer

U.S. teens still face a pretty bleak employment landscape, but their job prospects are predicted to be a bit brighter this summer, according to a new study by the Center for Labor Markets and Policy at Drexel University.

The study estimates that the nationwide 2015 summer employment rate for teens ages 16 to 19 will be 29.8 percent. That would represent the highest teen summer employment rate since 2008, when the figure was 32.4 percent.

The predicted 2015 teen employment rate of 29.8 percent is up from 27 percent in the summer of 2014 and 26.7 percent in 2013.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
4:59pm
Tue Jun 16, 2015

As Demands Grow For Federal Rental Assistance, Housing Advocates Oppose Cuts In House Budget Bill

Progress Illinois takes a look at the growing demand for federal rental assistance and why many housing advocates are opposing a controversial appropriations bill approved by the U.S. House last week. 

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
7:30pm
Tue Jun 2, 2015

Few Illinois Municipalities Meet State Deadline For Submitting Affordable Housing Plans

Progress Illinois details which Illinois municipalities have thus far met the state's Tuesday deadline to submit plans designed to address affordable housing shortages. 

Quick Hit
by Ashlee Rezin
10:08pm
Thu May 28, 2015

Community Activists, Elected Officials Decry Cuts In Rauner's Budget Proposal (VIDEO)

Carrying sings that read, "Rauner's Cuts Hurt Women" a group of community activists and Chicago-area elected officials staged a demonstration in the Loop on Thursday, pushing back against budget cuts outlined in Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner's 2016 budget proposal.

"If all we do is cut, cut, cut, all we get is blood, blood, blood. We will have the blood of innocent people running down the streets," said Cook County Commissioner Richard Boykin (1st).

Boykin was one of roughly 50 participants in the press conference and demonstration "Rauner Says"--mimicked after the game "Simon Says"--outside the Thompson Center. The game attempted to demonstrate how Rauner's proposed budget cuts would negatively impact women and low-income Illinoisans.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
1:41pm
Fri May 8, 2015

Report: Despite Walmart's Pay Hike, Employee Wages Will Still Cost Taxpayers Money

Even though Walmart has moved to increase employee wages, new data shows that the company's workers will still cost U.S. taxpayers a pretty penny to make up for the dismal earnings they bring home from working for the retail giant.

Last year, Americans for Tax Fairness issued a report stating that U.S. taxpayers pick up a $6.2 billion tab annually to cover public aid expenses for Walmart workers earning low wages.

That report came months before Walmart announced in February that 500,000 of its full- and part-time U.S. workers would be getting a wage hike. The hourly minimum wage for Walmart employees went up to $9 in April and will increase to $10 by February 2016.

In light of Walmart's new wage policy, Americans for Tax Fairness re-examined the taxpayer subsidy issue.

"Even after Walmart's planned wage increases are fully implemented, large taxpayer subsidies will still be required to compensate for Walmart's low wages," the group concludes in its newest report.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
1:39pm
Thu May 7, 2015

College Grads Face Bleak Wage Landscape, A Breakdown Of Illinois Jobless Rates By Race

The average hourly wage for young female college graduates was a mere $16.56 in March -- just 1.2 percent higher than what was earned by the same demographic at the end of 1989, according to new data released by the Economic Policy Institute.

That's just one of the takeaways from EPI's analysis of wage trends for college and high school graduates, ranging from December of 1989 to March of 2015.

The wage figures -- issued ahead of Friday's jobs report for April -- provide a "glimpse at the future for the graduating class of 2015" and are part of a larger forthcoming EPI report on recent young graduates and the U.S. job market they face.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
7:14pm
Wed Mar 11, 2015

Report: 'Tax Fairness' Key To Solving Illinois Budget Crisis

Illinois could generate up to $8.6 billion in new revenue annually if it were to embrace "tax fairness," according to a new report by Good Jobs First and the Keystone Research Center.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
6:04pm
Fri Jan 30, 2015

Illinois Ranks Poorly On Well-Being Indicators; African-American Jobless Rate

Progress Illinois takes a look at two new reports. One ranks Illinois on "key poverty indicators," while the other examines unemployment rates among racial groups in the state.

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