Teens Face a Dismal Summer Jobs Market

One of the forgotten groups of people harmed by open borders are teenagers trying to work to earn college tuition or simply because their families are poor. Many part-time or summer jobs that once were dependable opportunities for youngsters to make money and learn the ropes of the working world are now taken by immigrants, legal and illegal.

Just 35% of 16- to 19-year-olds in the United States had a job last year, the lowest teen employment rate since World War II, according to the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University in Boston. In a sputtering economy, employers — if they`re not downsizing — can bypass teens for more qualified adult applicants, said Andrew Sum, director of the center.

“You`re not going to bring in interns when you`re laying off their parents,” he said. The competition for jobs comes not only from adult workers who have lost jobs, but also from those 55 to 70 who are punching checkout registers and bagging groceries to supplement their retirement. And in some states, immigrant workers also are filling jobs traditionally held by teens. [Jobs for teens hard to find, Detroit Free Press, by Robin Erb, June 12, 2008]

In the ABC News report exerpted below, economist Andrew Sum stated, “Teenagers are working 11 to 12 percentage points less than they weree seven years ago. If the same thing happened to U.S. adults, we would have called it a great depression.”

Only one-third of 16-to-19-year-olds will find work this summer, the lowest rate since WWII. The clip also shows white and black kids alike struggling to find work, although the ghetto youngsters seem particularly discouraged: only 15 percent of inner-city teens looking for a job will find one.

In some locales, American kids have another mark against them when they don`t speak Spanish: Black Teens Feel the `Bilingual Preferred` Summer Job Blues (New America Media, May 3, 2008). When three kids from San Bernardino High went on a job search, they had a rude awakening:

“We were shocked. We applied at places like McDonalds, Burger King and Jack in the Box. We went to shoe stores, pizza parlors and convenience stores. The workers were overwhelmingly Spanish speaking. Pretty much they always ask us, `Do you speak Spanish?` They said we prefer bilingual,” says Jazanique.

And, as an American who only speaks English, her answer leaves her without the job. “It`s hard when you can`t even get an interview because you don`t speak Spanish,” said Jazanique. […] It does seem strange to Kimyen who grew up believing jobs are plentiful if you`re flexible, motivated and willing to work hard. “It`s like three strikes…Black, young and non-Spanish speaking. I`m mad but there is nothing I can do about it. It`s not fair.”

What kind of venal country have we become when we allow foreigners to take the place on the economic ladder that should belong to our own young people?