Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Job Seeker Gets A Cold Shoulder From His Congressman

On Friday, January 24, 2014, Congressman Brad Schneider (D-10th) held a carefully vetted "Round Table" discussion in Waukegan.  Three women were chosen to share their stories of unemployment.  The AOL Patch publications dutifully reported this discussion along with the Lake County News Sun.

Not reported were the efforts of Andy Chiero to be part of that discussion or to even speak with his congressman that day.  After calling and confirming the event would take place and that he could participate, Mr. Chiero drove for 45 minutes from his home in Fox Lake to Waukegan, only to be informed that his Congressman would not speak to him or hear his story.  After waiting for nearly two hours to speak to his Congressman, Mr. Chiero finally left the premises and returned home.

Did I mention that Mr. Chiero is a Republican?

Now, I understand that certain politicians enjoy putting together a well-scripted, vetted event designed to gather good press while appearing to be compassionate to the needs of their constituents. The three unemployed ladies had some pretty compelling stories. But Schneider couldn't find the time to speak with a 4th individual and hear his story?  Not even a minute?

On Thursday, February 20th, Mr. Schneider plans on holding a joint "hiring event" with Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth (D-8th) at Harper College in Palatine.  According to the press release, this is a "valuable meeting face-to-face with potential employers" and that Schneider was "confident that this 'hiring event' will offer many exciting opportunities to make connections, learn valuable strategies and potentially find your next job."

Which begs the question, will Mr. Chiero be allowed to attend and participate?  Will he finally get the opportunity to meet with his congressman and tell his story?  I notice there is a "pre-registration" requirement for this "hiring event." 

Can you imagine the media ruckus that would have occurred if a Democrat were turned away at a Republican roundtable on unemployment benefits?

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