The President Announces a Forum on Jobs and Economic Growth

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As the President was preparing to leave for his trip to Asia this morning, he took a moment to discuss the economy, which will of course have a central role in his discussions with leaders throughout the trip. He made clear that while we have come back from the brink of what many predicted would be a depression, he will not be satisfied until robust job growth returns. Towards that end, he announced that in December he will bring minds and stakeholders together for an intensive jobs forum:

As I've said from the start of this crisis, hiring often takes time to catch up to economic growth.  And given the magnitude of the economic turmoil that we've experienced, employers are reluctant to hire.

Small businesses and large firms are demanding more of their employees, their increasing their hours, and adding temporary workers -- but these companies have not yet been willing to take the steps necessary to hire again.  Meanwhile, millions of Americans -- our friends, our neighbors, our family members -- are desperately searching for jobs.  This is one of the great challenges that remains in our economy -- a challenge that my administration is absolutely determined to meet.

We all know that there are limits to what government can and should do, even during such difficult times.  But we have an obligation to consider every additional, responsible step that we can [take] to encourage and accelerate job creation in this country.  And that's why, in December, we'll be holding a forum at the White House on jobs and economic growth.  We’ll gather CEOs and small business owners, economists and financial experts, as well as representatives from labor unions and nonprofit groups, to talk about how we can work together to create jobs and get this economy moving again.

It's important that we don't make any ill-considered decisions -- even with the best intentions -- particularly at a time when our resources are so limited.  But it's just as important that we are open to any demonstrably good idea to supplement the steps we’ve already taken to put America back to work.  That’s what this forum is about.

President in Diplomatic Room, November 12, 2009

President Barack Obama makes a statement on the economy in the Diplomatic Room, announcing that a jobs forum will be held at the White House in December, November 12, 2009. (Official White House Photograph by Chuck Kennedy) November 12, 2009. (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy)

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