With still staggering unemployment rates, urban pollinator Julian Dobson believes there are better solutions to 'idleness' than creating more policies to beef up the labor market. If worklessness was seen as a valuable resource instead of a social stigma, the skills and talents of hundreds of thousands would not be overlooked merely because they are not fee-earning.
Solutions include sharing work more equitably, which would giving folks more time-off while keeping an income stream, or creating Timebanks which allow people to earn 'Time Dollars' for every hour they spend doing something for someone in their community, which they can then exchange for a service for themselves. Also underway in the UK is a Community Allowance pilot program that encourages those receiving assistance to use their time and skills to improve their neighborhoods.
And of course, one of the greatest benefactors of extra time is volunteerism. As psychologist and author Sherry Anderson says, 'Volunteers don't get paid, not because they're worthless, but because they're priceless."
Image: "Endless Time" by Irargerich on Flickr, courtesy of Creative Commons.Tweet