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This week lawmakers in Washington introduced a new bill to renew the long term unemployment benefits for the more than 3 million Americans still struggling to find work. But the harsh fact is that certain segments of the labor force are out of the game for good. Women, 45-55, who left their jobs to care for elderly parents, or lost their jobs in the recession, are facing their 60s with an even tougher chance at re-entering the workforce than men, and both genders are cut out of a labor market that values youth over experience.

What does the slow economic recovery mean for a generation that isn’t quite ready to face retirement? What do we lose when older workers stay home?

Also, a big win for public health, and a blow to the anti-vaccination movement.

Supreme Court Rules on Abortion Clinic Buffer Zones, Presidential Recess Appointments 6 MIN, 30 SEC

Two new decisions today from the nation’s highest court on cases that impact everyone from the President to grassroots activists. In one, the court curbed the President’s ability to make recess appointments. In the other, the court struck down a Massachusetts law that created 35 foot buffer zones between abortion protestors and clinics. Will Baude, assistant professor at the University of Chicago Law School, joins us.

Will Baude, University of Chicago (@crescat)

A Slower Recovery for Older Workers 35 MIN, 37 SEC

This week, two senators introduced a bipartisan plan to renew long term unemployment benefits for the more than 3 million Americans still looking for work. Congress allowed the benefit to expire last December. But even if the bill passes and insurance is reinstated, it provides only a temporary bit of relief. In the meantime, the long term effects of the recession and this sluggish recovery are hitting some Americans more than ever. One group stands out: middle aged women. As the economy took a dive, many women left the workforce to care for their aging parents – now as they try to re-enter the workforce they find their applications are going straight into the "do not call" pile.

Special thanks to Over 50 and Out of Work.

Dionne Searcey, New York Times (@dionnesearcey)
Heidi Shierholz, Economist, Economic Policy Institute (@EconomicPolicy)
Sara Rix, AARP's Public Policy Institute
Stephen Sweet, Ithaca College

NY Judge Deals a Blow to the Anti-Vaccine Movement 7 MIN, 49 SEC

Last week the anti-vaccination movement received a big legal blow. Federal Judge William Kuntz of Brooklyn ruled against three families who claimed that their religious rights were being violated when schools pulled their unvaccinated children out of class for fear of disease spreading through the school. Vaccinations have kept preventable childhood diseases, including measles and mumps at record lows in the last two decades. By 2000, measles was considered to have been essentially eradicated in the United States. The CDC has recently reported that the United States is experiencing a record number of measles cases this year with outbreaks spreading from New York to California. Daniel Salmon is Deputy director of the Institute for Vaccine Safety at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

Daniel Salmon, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health


Barbara Bogaev

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