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Bernanke praised a Canadian program Linking Jobless Aid to Community Work: people more happy.

U.S. Chairman of the Federal Reserve Ben Bernanke

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said tying unemployment assistance to community work may be an effective way to address joblessness while increasing the satisfaction among people who are out of work.

“Being unemployed is stressful, not just because of loss of income but also because of feelings of loss of control and diminished self-worth,” Bernanke said today in remarks prepared for the commencement address at the University of South Carolina.

The Fed chairman praised a Canadian program in which recipients of employment insurance or income assistance were offered jobs in community development and opportunities to develop a social network. He cited the idea as an example of how economic research into happiness and life satisfaction can provide policy makers with new insights. He didn’t comment on monetary policy or the U.S. economic outlook.

“Individuals who participated in these opportunities reported higher satisfaction than those who did not,” he said in Columbia, South Carolina. “Further study could shed light on the effectiveness of alternative approaches to traditional unemployment insurance programs.” READ MORE HERE.