I was always fascinated with watching young guys and girls from USA and other countries visiting Delhi for vacations as if it was their second home. Last week I got a chance to meet Jack through one of our mutual friend Prashant and after some formal discussion I asked him how come he was in India since the last 4 months. So Jack narrated his sad yet astonishing story, how in his state Pennsylvania crime is at an all time high so he is taking Unemployment Benefits there and working back here in India, “just for a change of air” and once the tenure ends he will return back home but he will make sure that he makes enough money over here. Now what the hell does that mean…!
In United States of America as soon as you become unemployed, you need to contact your state’s Unemployment Office to check your benefits eligibility. Maximum number of weeks that a US citizen can get unemployment benefits in New York itself is 79 which were earlier up to 93 weeks. You should not be surprised if the unemployment eligibility appears either generous or scanty .You can find little variations in laws in different states of America but the benefits could be extremely high for workers and the civilian labour force 97 percent and 89 percent respectively.
In Texas anyone can get Unemployment benefits based on factors like laid off, fired without misconduct, quit for medical reasons, quit for stalking and the list goes on which includes Unemployment Benefits if your employee reduces your working hours. In Pennsylvania the Unemployment Benefit are controlled by Department of Labour and Industry and is described under Special Session number 2 Article 1 “Unemployment Compensation law”. Here as well the laws are based more or less on similar parameters; which includes factors like last four quarter earning details, motivation to work, mandatory registration with job portal.
Now take a look at these figures among world’s top 10 cities offering best Unemployment Benefits Pennsylvania comes in top ten twice with its cities Pittsburgh on first rank and Philadelphia at sixth position with a weekly unemployment benefit up to $550.So they are earning almost 30,800 per week for not working in America, and in India this is what is offered to a Trainee MBA graduate for a whole month. There are other cities like San Antonio, Texas at 8th rank, Charlotte and Raleigh, North Carolina at 3rd and 5th spot.
Some more research and you will come to know that out of top 25 global cities with highest number of Facebook users US cities occupy six different slots which includes New York, Los Angeles ,Dallas, Philadelphia.
Going by the crime rate in USA these are the same cities which are either hub for Gambling and Prostitutions or suffer from the epidemics of extremely high crime rates in the whole USA. According to the FBI reports on crime occurrence in difference cities of USA only in California state its cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco and Oakland were the chart toppers with highest number of Violent Crime reported, the point worth mentioning here is that Texas is the second state with highest number of such violent crime reported.
Now the question is it just by sheer luck that same city posses all these three features of high Crime Rates, largest Number of Facebook Users and highest and best Unemployment Benefits. According to my analysis it is a chain process. Someone who just left his job after working for one year is getting $550 for free, so why will he/she even think of working? Now he/she is free the whole day with his wallet full so he is online, being party to the increasing “online culture” trying out his/her hands at cyber crime, pornography and at the end, once they lose track completely they turn towards crime in real life. At the end of the day after they realise they want a change of air they do visit our beloved country.
Contributed by SHARIQUE MANAZIR ( Class of 2013, IBS Hyderabad)