These days, it’s not uncommon to see job postings that say, “If you’re currently unemployed – for any reason - don’t bother to apply.” Why? Because some people have been out of work for so long, employers feel they’re “damaged goods” and that there must be a good reason why haven’t been able to get another job. Or they believe that the workers aren’t up to speed with fast-changing technology. 

But critics say it’s nothing less than blatant discrimination against the unemployed. And the bad news is: If you’re unemployed, you don’t enjoy protected status, like job applicants who can’t be discriminated against based on race, gender, religion, or disability.

The good news is: Several states, including New Jersey and Michigan, and the federal government are working to make the policy illegal. And prevent companies from refusing to hire someone or to offer them less money based on their employment history or status.

Until the laws change, how can you boost your chances of landing a job? You might want to look at the temporary job market. According to workplace experts, in the next five years more jobs will be filled with temporary and part-time workers.

And for a lot of businesses, hiring a temp worker is a great way to “test drive” an employee before offering them a full-time position.