Policy Brief

Investing in a skilled workforce is vital to America’s long-term economic growth and global competitiveness. Even as the Zero-16 Contract for Education proposed earlier would enable young people graduating from high school to pursue college or career training, the Career Opportunity Plan would...
09/04/2012
Publication
The manufacturing sector once offered a large supply of stable, middle-class jobs to American workers. Yet middle-income manufacturing jobs have been disappearing from the United States for the past 30 years. While technological innovation has played a much-recognized role in the erosion of the...
09/04/2012
Publication
Sustaining a strong middle class – and a strong and competitive American economy – over the long term requires a foundation of robust public investment. From physical infrastructure investments in efficient roads, rail lines, seaports and airports, safe drinking water and waste systems, and...
09/04/2012
Publication
More than two years after the recession officially ended, 25 million Americans – 16 percent of the labor force – are still out of work or underemployed.1 There are more than four jobseekers for every job opening. 6.2 million people have been out of work for more than six months. While the economic...
09/04/2012
Publication
Education has long been recognized as a primary means of improving one’s economic prospects. Today, a postsecondary degree or certificate has become increasingly necessary for earning a middle-class living. The last two decades have greatly heightened the demand for a highly educated workforce—and...
09/04/2012
Publication
Child care and early education are vital to economic growth and future competitiveness. Working families need access to affordable and high-quality child care and preschool education in order to meet their families’ basic needs. At the same time, investing in child care also meets a national...
09/04/2012
Publication
In today’s economy, families increasingly depend on the incomes of all adults in the household, yet many working people also have responsibilities as parents and caregivers. Public policy has not kept up with the changing workforce: without access to paid leave, employees who need flexibility in...
09/04/2012
Publication
Personal debt can stand as an insurmountable obstacle to Americans wishing to build assets and secure a place in the middle class. In addition to the critical last resort of bankruptcy relief, Americans need fair rules to ensure that lenders – from credit card companies to mortgage lenders to...
09/04/2012
Publication
Household debt is burdening millions of families and stifling economic growth in the nation as a whole. In the first half of 2011, 11 million American households – more than one in five homeowners – owed more on their mortgages than their homes were worth.1 Millions of families have already lost...
09/04/2012
Publication
Home ownership is commonly understood as the quintessential marker of having arrived in the middle class: a family’s home is often the single largest asset that they own and has traditionally served as an important vehicle for wealth accumulation and economic security.  Today, however, middle...
09/04/2012
Publication
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