Archive for June 5th, 2010

“Don’t Come Here!” – Unemployment East and West

June 5, 2010

No Jobs In California.

Those in search of jobs should not seek employment in California, for they are likely to be disappointed, according to the warning just sent out. Lewis O. Whip, formerly of this county, who is now at San Diego, Cal., sent to The News a newspaper clipping which sets forth this warning. He states that, “the Eastern people are called tenderfeet out here in California.” The California Commission of immigration and Housing has just concluded an exhaustive investigation of conditions of unemployed in that state. It found there are now in the state thousands of more men than jobs, hence this warning to outsiders seeking jobs to stay away.

The News (Frederick, Maryland) Dec 29,  1914


NEW YORK, Oct. 17. — Shun New York! That is the warning flashed broadcast by Walter Lincoln Sears, newly appointed superintendent of the Municipal Employment Bureau, which opened its doors for business the first time a couple of days ago.

“New York is the worst place in the world for the man seeking employment now,” said Sears today. “I don’t like to be pessimistic, nor do I like to overstate things, but by all the signs, I fear this is going to be ‘some’ winter. If there is anything that can be done to keep the unemployed away from here it should be done. Already the number of men out of work exceeds the supply of jobs by thousands and the result is only too plain. There is going to be lots of suffering. Keep out of New York. That’s my advice to job hunters.”

Sears is hard at work rounding his department into shape so that some real good can be done this winter. The municipal free employment bureau was authorized in an ordinance which was signed May 4 by Mayor Mitchell.

A twice-a-month labor letter, in which local conditions are fully reported, is one  of the innovations planned by Sears. Sears came here from Boston in September. He was in charge of the state employment bureau there for eight years.


The municipal bureau here consists of fourteen clerks. Its offices are located at Lafayette and Leonard streets, where the floor space of 3000 square feet is occupied.

The bureau which will be maintained out of general taxes collected by the city, aims to reduce unemployment by giving free service to both employes and workers and by studying the labor market in such a manner that the worker can be sent on his way to employment as soon as a vacancy occurs.

“After all, the labor supply is an interstate proposition,” said Sears. “The federal government should take a hand and organize a national employment bureau. There are several bills before Congress, but they are unnecessary. Legislation is not needed. The department of Labor can start the venture if the funds are appropriated.”

Superintendent Sears said no municipality can do more than relieve the unemployed problem, since the industrial difficulties are nationwide. However, it is possible to do away with much waste of time and money by having the city bureau, he declared.

It has been charged that private employment offices in the city waged a desperate opposition to the new municipal bureau. The reason for this was obvious. The municipal bureau nearly put the private offices out of business. It really did that in a great many cases.

A majority of the private offices, it has been known, were simply “grafting” places. Laborers were bled for their savings by fake employment agents. Even in the best of the private bureaus, such high rates are charged that the laborers realize but little from their jobs.

Sears declared the opposition of the private bureaus had no effect for the reason that the municipal bureau fills a long felt want. It is a popular institution and the people won’t stand for seeing private interests block it, he said.

Oakland Tribune (Oakland, California) Oct 18, 1914

**Someone should have informed Mr. Sears that “taxpayer funded” is NOT free;  the taxpayers pay for it.