A Laid Off Chicago Sun Times Photographer Chronicles His Own Unemployment

Chicago Sun Times lay off photographers Rob Hart tumblr

Chicago Sun Times Lays Off 28 Photographers

This week the Chicago Sun-Times (not some rinky-dink paper, the Chicago Sun Times, people) laid off 28 people including it’s entire photography department.

Yep. All the photographers.

Meet the *former* Chicago Sun Times photographer, Rob Hart

One of the pink slipped employees, Rob Hart, who claims he’s been replaced by a reporter with an iPhone is passing his time on unemployment with a new Tumblr feed, titled Laid off from the Sun-Times,” to chronicle this turn of events in his life.

If you go there, you’ll see what you’d find in most of our homes if we were suddenly spending 9-5 in our living rooms trying to figure out how to make next month’s bills. There’s a tiny makeshift home office he set up behind the washer and dryer, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and some unemployment papers serving as a pizza plate.

You’ll also see a little bit of humanity. The kind of everyday struggle impacting 354,000 Americans who sought unemployment last week. If you’re unemployed, insecurely employed or otherwise stretching between bills, Hart’s photos might give you a bit of solidarity, hope and hopefully a laugh here and there. But if your financial situation is stable for the moment, there’s of course a natural temptation to dismiss headlines and stories that don’t directly apply to you.

Spend 60 seconds on Tumblr

But here’s a suggestion for those gainfully employed: maybe go see his Tumblr blog anyways. And allow yourself 60 seconds of awareness about what someone else if facing today.

Who knows when the next day will come when the struggle being faced is ours and we’re looking for someone to grace us with a minute of encouragement or compassion?

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  • http://www.robhartphoto.com Rob Hart

    Sarah I happened to stumble upon your site while looking for something and I just wanted to thank you for taking time to feature my work and the situation of my brothers and sisters. At the time I couldn’t keep up with everything written but it’s great to find these gems out there. Thank you very much.

    • http://www.sarahcunningham.org Sarah

      Hey Rob, so glad you stopped by and so glad to share your story (and your creative way of presenting it) with my readers. It prompted a special sort of empathy and reality-check, I suspect. I hope photographers and other creatives will continue to produce art like this that asks people to think and feel simultaneously. :) Well done!

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