Deseret News
Letter to the Editor

Daniela Ruiz’s letter of Nov. 4 (“Free tuition?”) is right on. Tuition-free community colleges would not only be good for the economy, it would also be an act of compassion.

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Blue-collar workers — many who are men between 45 and 54 years old without a college degree — are having a tough time. Their average wage has fallen 10 percent, and many have lost their jobs with no prospect of finding another job. They are living on the edge and finding solace in drugs, alcohol and suicide.

In the meantime, there are millions of high-tech jobs remaining unfilled because no one has the skills for them. In addition, there are 530,000 computer jobs, but not enough computer school graduates. These blue-collar workers could fill those jobs if they could get the training. But they need help. They need tuition-free community colleges. Then they could earn high wages, and they would spend money and pay taxes, which would pay for the colleges.

Leon Johnson

West Valley City