Long-term unemployment in the United States

Ofer Sharone, David L. Blustein, Carl E. Van Horn

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


As of 2015, the percentage of the unemployed who are long-term unemployed remains at levels unseen in the US in over six decades. A well-established literature associates long-term unemployment with a variety of social ills, including poverty, increased risk of physical and mental health problems, and deteriorating emotional well-being. This chapter describes the nature and scope of long-term unemployment in the United States and its impact on individuals and families. It also focuses on the issue of mental health and explores the causal relationship between long-term unemployment and mental health as well as the most promising solutions to the mental health challenges raised by long-term unemployment. The final section of the chapter focuses on the challenges that arise when longterm unemployed workers internalize the stigma of unemployment and blame themselves for their labor market difficulties, and it considers possible causes of and solutions to such self-blame.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Cambridge Handbook of Social Problems
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781108656184
ISBN (Print)9781108426169
StatePublished - Mar 22 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Sciences(all)

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    Sharone, O., Blustein, D. L., & Van Horn, C. E. (2018). Long-term unemployment in the United States. In The Cambridge Handbook of Social Problems (Vol. 1, pp. 551-566). Cambridge University Press. https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108656184.031