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Long-Time Jobless Social Worker Keeps the Faith

Dentral Holman Smith. Photo courtesy of Smith's Facebook page.

Philadelphia social worker Dentral Holman Smith has been unemployed for more than a year and her unemployment benefits recently ran out. As of today Congress has not extended unemployment checks to about a million Americans who have come to the end of their benefit period.

The Los Angeles Times ran this story on Smith and her struggle to remain optimistic despite her dire situation. “I’m blessed it (unemployment insurance) lasted as long as it did,” said Smith, who is trying to launch her own business. “The time I received my benefits is the time I was given to grow spiritually.”

Q: Considering the state of the economy should Congress extend benefits to long-term unemployed Americans?  Or is it time to stop the checks in order to help reduce the rising national deficit?

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  1. I think Congress should extent unemployment benefits to professionals that are out of work due to the economy. I, too, lost my job due to state budget cuts and my unemployment benefits will soon run out too. There are simply no positions. I graduated from Grad school when I was 47 years old…and decided on Social Work because of the increasing needs in the field. Now that I have my degree and three years experience, not to mention $85,000 in student loans that I need to re-pay, I am in no position to go back to school to start a NEW career. Congress should support an extention of unemployment benefits, unless they have a better idea or a job for me….

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