WASHINGTON D.C., – September 29, 2014 – New data complied by the Senate Budget Committee shows that nearly one in four of the 124.5 million Americans ages 25-54 are not working. Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Alabama) created the chart based on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Sessions’ office released a statement further explaining the chart stating, “There are 124.5 million Americans in their prime working years (ages 25–54). Nearly one-quarter of this group -28.9 million people, or 23.2 percent of the total- is not currently employed. They either became so discouraged that they left the labor force entirely, or they are in the labor force but unemployed. This group of non-employed individuals is more than 3.5 million larger than before the recession began in 2007.”
“Those attempting to minimize the startling figures about America’s vanishing workforce—workplace participation overall is near a four-decade low—will say an aging population is to blame. But in fact, while the workforce overall has shrunk nearly 10 million since 2009, the cohort of workers in the labor force ages 55 to 64 has actually increased over that same period, with many delaying retirement due to poor economic conditions,” the statement continued. “In fact, over two-thirds of all labor force dropouts since that time have been under the age of 55. These statistics illustrate that the problems in the American economy are deep, profound, and pervasive, afflicting the sector of the labor force that should be among the most productive.”