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Big Island The Island of Hawaii
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Old 06-26-2011, 09:29 PM
 
Location: Orchidland Estates (Puna)
12 posts, read 41,088 times
Reputation: 39

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For those Big Island residents who consider themselves either "gainfully" employed or (woefully) unemployed, this thread is not intended to be suited for your situations. I'd like to introduce discussion on the joys and frustrations, advantages and disadvantages of working and living from payday to payday, knowing the only thing between your family continuing to survive and being homeless and penniless is a single devastating event. There may be some who would have it no other way. Life may be simpler that way in their opinions. As for me, I don't like it and have been attempting to improve my family's economic situation for over two years.

As residents of the Big Island since early 1996, my wife (now retired) and I moved here with the clothes on our backs, a few hundred dollars, a suitcase apiece, and no jobs. Within three months I was working, although outside of my credentialed field. Four months later, my wife found her a job. This is when we phoned a friend in the mainland and had them put our car on the barge to Hawaii. Finally, four wheels of unadulterated "independence" and no more walking... at least not unless it was for pure pleasure. Soon afterward, I moved into my credentialed field with a primary job and even supplemented with a part-time job.

Long story short, we began creating a "comfortable" living... until 2009 when I got laid off. My job was directly influenced by state budget cuts. I was never unemployed, but kept my part-time job until landing another part-time job four months later. Between the two, I'm not making near as much as my previous primary job. Over the past two years, I've been diligently applying for whatever jobs have been advertised in the newspaper, Craigslist, Monster, BigIslandHelpWanted, SnagaJob, Workforce Development's HireNet, State of Hawaii websites, GoJobs, RCUH, CareerBuilder, and many others. I've even had a few interviews... to no avail.

Now, I could attempt to cite all kinds of possible reasons, both internal and external, realistically possible and absurdly unlikely (some of which are part and partial to other Hawaii City-Data discussions herein about life in the islands). But I won't... at least not until others "in the same underemployed boat" start to chime in and share their stories. I know I'm not alone in harboring, through no willful intent of my own, a "full tank" of untapped and ignored talent that cannot be put to use at my current jobs, simply because they are the type of lower paying jobs that do not require complex/critical thinking.

So let's hear from all you underemployed folks whose natural talents, human resources, and professional knowledge, skills, and experience are being under-utilized, under-mobilized, and under-rewarded.
Ainakeeper
Hilo/Puna
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Old 06-27-2011, 04:43 PM
 
181 posts, read 555,222 times
Reputation: 186
This is America. People who have talents that are not being appreciated, start their own business.

You could probably come up with a list of reasons why your particular talents aren't conducive to starting a business, but that's just an excuse.

Put your thinking cap on and figure out how to market your talents to others.
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Old 07-05-2011, 02:29 AM
 
Location: Orchidland Estates (Puna)
12 posts, read 41,088 times
Reputation: 39
Thanks, Cagary. I'll be chewing on that for a while, along with my usual "humble pie," which has pretty much become my staple diet in today's lousy economy.

IMHO, about the only thing I have to offer prospective clients in the way of a self-owned and operated business is writing composition and/or editing services. Coincidentally, I've just recently begun negotiations with the owner of a national magazine publication, but I don't see it ever generating a significant "full-time" income sufficient to cover the costs of the modest standard of living to which my family has had to become accustomed. Perhaps it too could be yet another supplemental income, together with my other two part-time jobs, that would elevate us a couple more rungs up the ladder from bankruptcy.

Honestly, I never thought I'd live to see the day that so many U.S. citizens, myself included, would acquiesce to being thankful for part-time (under)employment. This isn't exactly "The Change" I imagined then-candidate Obama was referring to in 2008.
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Old 07-05-2011, 11:24 AM
 
820 posts, read 2,919,956 times
Reputation: 646
ainakeeper - I'm not exactly sure what you are asking.

The situation you describe, of being in a layoff in 2009 and having a hard time finding employment... not unusual to any state right now. Our good friends in California are reporting pretty much the same thing. Those who thought they were safe from layoff have been let go. Jumping into the job hunting market, where they were used to posting on Jobs.com or other sites and immediately getting interviews - all dry. We know people who have been unemployed in their job field for over a year, some going on 2 years.

Those who must have income are doing whatever they can, often at work that is not their primary, secondary, or even previously-considered fields. Hey, we all gotta pay the bills.

Can't blame this on one state, or even one politician. The situation is huge, and will eventually trend in another direction. Hang on, do what you need to do. Adjust your attitude, hone your skills, widen your preferences.

Just goes to show how many of us have our identity and ego attached to our careers. This is a good time to reflect on how else we might find validation in our lives. Work is work. You is you.
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Old 07-05-2011, 01:00 PM
 
Location: Kailua, Oahu, HI and San Diego, CA
1,178 posts, read 5,765,915 times
Reputation: 801
I am long retired, so what follows comes only from hearsay evidence.

I suspect that much of the unemployment in Hawaii is a result of Hawaii's health care system. As I understand it, there is a Hawaii law that requires all Hawaii businesses to provide health care to all employees - except that there is a loophole.

I am told that if you do not work more than 20 hours a week for a company, they do not have to provide you healthcare. Therefore, there are many, many less-than-20-hours-a-week workers.

Comments?
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Old 07-05-2011, 01:18 PM
 
Location: Hawaii-Puna District
3,752 posts, read 10,940,957 times
Reputation: 2477
Quote:
Originally Posted by HankDfrmSD View Post
I am long retired, so what follows comes only from hearsay evidence.

I suspect that much of the unemployment in Hawaii is a result of Hawaii's health care system. As I understand it, there is a Hawaii law that requires all Hawaii businesses to provide health care to all employees - except that there is a loophole.

I am told that if you do not work more than 20 hours a week for a company, they do not have to provide you healthcare. Therefore, there are many, many less-than-20-hours-a-week workers.

Comments?
Yep, that's the main reason why employers don't hire full-time people.
We call them 19 hour jobs.
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Old 07-05-2011, 01:57 PM
 
4,919 posts, read 21,923,548 times
Reputation: 6282
I heard its not because they have to priovide health care, but because the amount they can charge the employee is capped. If the company offered health care and the employee paid 100% or even 80% of the cost, most employers can afford to keep them on pfull time. But if they are capped to only charging the emplyee 40% and the employer must pay all the rest, that's the real reason. It's not they must provide health care but who pays the cost.
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Old 07-05-2011, 02:14 PM
 
Location: Maui County, HI
4,131 posts, read 7,066,525 times
Reputation: 3390
Quote:
Originally Posted by HankDfrmSD View Post
I am long retired, so what follows comes only from hearsay evidence.

I suspect that much of the unemployment in Hawaii is a result of Hawaii's health care system. As I understand it, there is a Hawaii law that requires all Hawaii businesses to provide health care to all employees - except that there is a loophole.

I am told that if you do not work more than 20 hours a week for a company, they do not have to provide you healthcare. Therefore, there are many, many less-than-20-hours-a-week workers.

Comments?
If those 20 hour jobs were full time, there would be half as many workers doing them, which wouldn't really be any better.

The connection of health insurance with employment is one of the stupidest conventions in America.
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Old 07-05-2011, 02:15 PM
 
Location: Maui County, HI
4,131 posts, read 7,066,525 times
Reputation: 3390
Quote:
Originally Posted by PacificFlights View Post
I heard its not because they have to priovide health care, but because the amount they can charge the employee is capped. If the company offered health care and the employee paid 100% or even 80% of the cost, most employers can afford to keep them on pfull time. But if they are capped to only charging the emplyee 40% and the employer must pay all the rest, that's the real reason. It's not they must provide health care but who pays the cost.

Amazing how in this developed country the work a person does can be valuable, but his life is not valuable enough for him to have healthcare to stay alive. I guess life is cheap.
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Old 07-05-2011, 07:26 PM
 
181 posts, read 555,222 times
Reputation: 186
Quote:
Originally Posted by winkosmosis View Post
If those 20 hour jobs were full time, there would be half as many workers doing them, which wouldn't really be any better.

The connection of health insurance with employment is one of the stupidest conventions in America.
Leave it to a liberal to start calling people "stupid" when others don't agree with them.

There is not one static "pie" of employment here on the Big Island that needs to be divided up by the people living here. We need to make more pies. There is an ever expanding demand for goods and services here and if the government would get out of the way, people would step up and provide these goods and services and they would be working again (full time).


If an employer and potential employee agree to employment terms, the government should just get out of the way and let us get back to work. We are not children that need to be protected and taken care of by bureaucrats in Honolulu or Washington. We are adults and we can look after our own best interests which include feeding our families. If my employer offers health care benefits as part of my employment package, fine. If not, I'll find a way to pay for my health care. Just don't make it so expensive and difficult for employers to hire me in the first place.

This is my humble opinion. Anyone who disagrees is not "stupid".
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