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Senate reaches agreement to restore Extended Unemployment Compensation (EUC)

Tough fight ahead in House
By staff |
March 17, 2014
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Washington DC – A deal was reached between Senate Democrats and Republicans, March 13, to restore benefits for the long-term unemployed. A group of 10 Senators - five Republicans and five Democrats - are sponsoring legislation to restore the cuts to emergency unemployment insurance. The accord would extend long-term unemployment benefits for five months and would be retroactive until the end of December 2013. A vote is expected soon.

An uphill fight is under way in the Republican-dominated House. Representative Brad Schneider (D-IL), filed what is known as a discharge petition, March 12, which would force a vote on Extended Unemployment Compensation (EUC) if it signed by a majority of House members.

Both the Senate and the House must pass the measure before it goes to the White House.

Hope for extending long term unemployment benefits dimmed last December when Democrats in Congress did not insist on the inclusion of the unemployment extension in the budget deal.

To date more than 2 million workers have lost unemployment benefits and pressure is mounting on Congress to restore them.

The economic crisis that hit the U.S. and most of the capitalist world eight years ago left in its wake persistently high unemployment and lower wages.

 

48 comments

 
JacquelineInPennsylvania wrote 24 weeks 22 hours ago

I Thought to Myself "This is The Beginning of Homelessness!"

It's been a while since I commented here. I hardly spent any time on the internet or on job searching here in PA because I was working 13 to 14 hours a day going to two part-time jobs. Starting in February one job was a hotel front desk clerk (and assumed maintenance person, housekeeper, and general magic wand waver for everything else to clueless guests who didn't realize that one person worked alone in the entire building per 8 hour shift and that was the front desk clerk). It paid minimum wage. Never in my life did I make minimum wage, not even at my high school job at Wendy's in 1987. Then in March I also began working a seasonal job at a large retail garden center that pays $10.00 an hour. I would leave my house at 8:00 a.m., work both jobs and arrive home at 11:30 p.m.. I was hardly be able to put my feet on the floor the next morning, they hurt that badly from standing and moving like I had to for all those hours. One night on the job at the hotel I had a major anxiety attack that had debilitating lingering side effects for two days that left me very ill but I recovered and I didn't miss a day of work though my precious days off were lost to a migraine and nausea from the anxiety attack...enough said. It wasn't worth compromising my health and it wasn't physically possible to work alone doing all the chores that were expected so I quit that job. Two part-time jobs aren't enough for an adult with a modest mortgage and utility bills and essential expenses like car insurance that can't go unpaid each month. In spite of my taking two jobs my electricity was shut off in April and I couldn't help but cry as I called the power company using the last few minutes of my free cell phone, one that is issued to qualifying low income people, and I thought to myself as I sat in my cold dark house "My God, this is the beginning of homelessness. This is how it happens. This is how unemployed people ended up in tent cities in 2010 and 2011 though no one talks about that anymore." I'm tired of getting shut off notices for my utilities but this has become a lifestyle for the past few years here in PA that shows absolutely no sign of ending any time soon because employment prospects are not improving. All we have here are part-time, mostly minimum wage or very close to it jobs.

 
Needhelp! wrote 24 weeks 2 days ago

56 Years old & can't find a

56 Years old & can't find a job. Unemployment running out! Worked all my life & now may lose all I worked for. How can some people get 2 years unemployment & others can't get an extra 3 months to get a job. HELP Please!

 
Anonymous wrote 33 weeks 2 days ago

Boehner Salary and Net Worth

Speaker of the House John Boehner.....
Average Net Worth: $3,588,556*

Minimum Net Worth: $1,772,112
Maximum Net Worth: $5,405,000

Average 2011 Income: $255,658**

Min. Gross Income: $241,315
Max. Gross Income: $270,000

Seems to me that while he is messing with our money (EUC) he is quite comfortable.....this is what makes me not proud to be an American anymore.....we don't count as citizens am guessing...when the illegal immigrants are doing better than we are ...well that a sin

 
JacquelineInPennsylvania wrote 33 weeks 3 days ago

Here in PA the Job Search specialists became unemployed

A few years ago here in my region of Pennsylvania the job search specialists employed at Pennsylvania CareerLink who assist displaced workers with WIA school admission, and the Trade Act, and all aspects of resume writing, computer training, etc lost their jobs when 20 people were cut on the staff due to budget cuts. Half the staff was cut. The sub-contracted agencies for the state are always in fear of losing their funding, and it depends on the governor's budget. For most of the 2000's the state of PA couldn't pass a budget for months after the previous year's budget expired because of their arguing. There was a hiring freeze for state related jobs all that time, and the domino effect that goes with it. Some regional Career-Link offices in neighboring counties have closed about two years ago or more. That makes it ridiculously hard for unemployed people to have to travel 20 to 30 miles to the neighboring CareerLink as a requirement to register and receive UC.

Years ago when federal UC stopped in Spring of 2010 because of the same fighting someone from PA Labor & Industry told me that the laws are very outdated regarding unemployment and the laws need to revised accordingly to extend unemployment beyond the initial 26 weeks here, to be in line with the new historic record of unemployment. I first became unemployed in November of 2008 and I have not been able to replace my good paying live-able wage, full time job. There is nothing here in WIA to study except truck driver and a few office jobs like medical office assistant and anyone who took the WIA money who I met is stacking boxes as a temp working in a warehouse, not even using their certificate. There are no good training options here in WIA for green jobs or technical jobs that are in demand where sustainable employment will be gained. The schools don't exist here to train people for modern jobs. It also depends on how many weeks of unemployment a person gets whether they will have a full year of UC to pay their bills while they do the WIA training, and the training must be a program that can be completed within a year. One big problem is by the time people complete all the requirements of registering to use the CareerLink services and attending the series of mandatory workshops required before access to WIA consideration about three months could pass before a person can be referred considered for WIA. Time is of the essence because the person is living solely on unemployment benefits, and some people are not eligible for unemployment extensions.

There is a severe disconnect in the minds of the general public about unemployment. I see this every day when I read the editorial call-in comments in the local newspaper where employed people are hating on the unemployed. Ignorance is rampant in the minds of the employed and they equate unemployment with welfare. The ignorant who hate don't even know that the average unemployed person is not given welfare or medical assistance, but possibly they could get food stamps and some heating assistance. I reply to them that they should fear unemployment because it is dreadful and no one is immune to it and one day when the haters themselves are unemployed they will understand it much better.

Creditors will say that all day long they get calls from people who are having to take minimum wage to $9.00 an hour jobs and they can't pay their bills on the wages that a teenager living at home might earn, and I am one of them and I have been since 2008. My income in 2008 was $29,000 working in customer service for a Fortune 500 company that extrudes aluminum until the economy completely tanked here in PA. With 4 federal unemployment extensions my annual income was $19,000 for 18 months, and when federal US stopped for me in May of 2010 I had only a part-time 20 hour a week job at $9.00 an hour as income. My annual income in 2011 was $9,000. I still must pay all my bills including a mortgage and necessities though I'm making $20,000 a year less. I was reduced to poverty level and Labor & Industry calls us the working poor. I'm 45 years old with an excellent work history, no physical limitations, and a pristine criminal background. I'm making minimum wage working part-time as a hotel desk clerk and I'm lining up two additional part-time jobs, always searching for something better.

Here full time jobs last as long as 60 or 90 days probationary and when your health insurance benefits come due you're terminated. We have nothing here except revolving warehouse doors where people work without insurance and they come to work wearing splints because of fractures suffered lifting a minimum of 70 lbs. by hand per box, for 12 hours a day. The biggest irony is that I live in the region of the Molly McGuires, the people who fought for labor laws in the coal mines and they gave their lives to obtain rights for workers and if they saw what was happening today they would turn over in their graves. We need a revolution and everyone in this country must be their own revolutionary.

This is one country that is unusual because here people fear the government and in many other countries the government fears the people.

 
Anonymous wrote 33 weeks 3 days ago

EUC Benefits

I am 41 years old and my father has worked his whole life. I have never known the man to not have a honest job. His company was recently shut down and he had to draw unemployment. With the economy and the available jobs out there it will be a up hill climb for him. Six months for 41 years of hard work is ridiculous. The people need to stand up and voice their opinion. This country was founded on hard working individuals and they thrived. What a great way for this country and our leaders to show support. Maybe we should just keep helping third world countries instead of ourselves.
Pay attention to the leaders what they are saying and make sure that they are not in office the next term.

 
Anonymous wrote 33 weeks 5 days ago

WHO ARE THE LONG-TERM UNEMPLOYED?

As a professional Career Counselor who worked with the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) for eight years, I would like to comment what appears to be a serious misunderstanding of the issues of long-term unemployment both in government and in the general public. . When I worked as a Program Representative in a One Stop Career Center my job was to help the unemployed find work. I am very familiar with how government unemployment programs operate at the customer level and why they can fail to help the unemployed in a timely manner. Based on this, I wholeheartedly support long -term unemployment benefits and wish to share my insights based on years of actual experience with the unemployed.
First of all, there is a gross misunderstanding as to why some people take so long to get a job. It is generally NOT because they don’t want to work and it is NOT because they aren't trying to find employment. In fact, I have found that most people eventually DO get rehired but for various reasons some people take longer. Why is this? One reason is simply that “the Best and the Brightest tend to get hired first. “ Here are some common examples from my years in the field:
Whether it is fair or not, older workers and seniors are not usually the employer's first choice. You can argue the illegalities of age discrimination, but an employer is going to hire the best he can get and that is just how it is. When I did assessment testing on seniors, I found that they often lack computer skills and are not as fast as younger workers might be. Many are perplexed at having to maneuver internet job sites, fill out online applications and upload resumes, making it difficult for them even to apply for jobs. Offering them computer classes is good, but they cannot stop and take computer classes while they are having their homes foreclosed and their vehicles repossessed. Older workers are a valuable asset but they can take longer to gain reemployment and long-term unemployment benefits are vital to this section of the workforce.
Older workers often have physical problems that make them a poor choice for jobs that require lifting or standing or have weather extremes such as construction work or other manual labor. It is is very hard for them to find successful employment as quickly as others. They often cannot pass employment physicals that require them to lift 50 pounds or squat for two minutes, so the younger and healthier get hired first. Although age discrimination is illegal, older persons may not be chosen because their physical appearance is not what the employer would choose for his "company image” and gray hair and middle age spread are generally not to one's advantage in a job search. It often takes the older worker longer to find a job and the need for long-term unemployment benefits is critical.
Some of these same issues can also apply to younger persons who lack the skills to pass assessment testing that employers often use now. The sharper candidate gets picked first. For jobs that do not require a college degree, these youth can easily suffer from long term unemployment problems. Lack of work experience and skills hinder their efforts. And many employers will not even take an application from a person who does not have a high school diploma or a GED yet these youth need a job to support them while they do go back to school. Regarding appearance, I have frequently seen young persons whose tattoos, piercings, or dress style prevented their success at interviews and often, they have not yet learned the social skills that would deem them desirable candidates by the employer, so it can take them longer to get a job. In fact, they often have no idea that what the reason is that hey are not getting hired. Frequently, I have also seen those who have juvenile misdemeanors or similar issues struggle to come out on top in a pool of applicants. Again, these persons can eventually find work, but it takes longer as they are not the first choice. They need the protection of long term unemployment benefits.
Another group that has more serious problems is workers who have experience in jobs that no longer exist. Whether the job has been outsourced, the company has gone under or downsized those persons with specific skill sets can suffer severely in trying to find new employment. As a Workforce professional, I always stressed the importance of transferrable skills and functional resumes to my clients, but these can only go so far. In rural areas where the job opportunities are limited and in economically depressed areas, there is more time needed for a person to secure a job. When there are only two factories in town and yours went under, there is not a lot of choice remaining. Again, it is not impossible for these persons to get reemployed, but it generally takes far longer.
Background issues are another factor in the long term unemployment problem; certain people have background issues that either prevent or hinder their ability to find employment. Those who have been fired in the past have a harder time getting re-hired and those persons with criminal backgrounds or bad credit can easily find themselves un-hirable by many employers. For anyone with credit problems or a criminal background, there is an excellent program called the Federal Bonding Program, but thinking that this solves all the problems is not realistic. It can take a person much longer to find an employer who wants to participate. Furthermore, there are many jobs that require background clearance and an unemployed person could never be considered. Again, it can take this sector of the population more time to gain employment. Long-term unemployment benefits are needed for the extra time that is required.
The question of Job Training is complex. To say that job training is the answer to the unemployment problem is illogical and inaccurate. Persons who try to force the issue of retraining are not very knowledgeable in the field. Job Training can be a good idea, but it is only applicable for people who have an outside source financial support and can sustain themselves while the training is completed and until they have gotten job in their new field. When I worked with W.I.A., we could not put a person into training and pay for the training unless they had a means of support. An unemployed person cannot go to school when they have no income to put a roof over their head or food on the table.
It is important that we refrain from pre-conceived ideas about who the long-term unemployed are and why they are struggling. We must be careful not to stereotype them into the category of “lazy bums “and those who think they are “too good to work.” By definition, those who are eligible for Unemployment Benefits are people who have been employed and have lost their job through no fault of their own. Long-term unemployment benefits are important for all, but for certain sectors of our population, they are critical.

 
Anonymous wrote 33 weeks 5 days ago

My car is next to be taken

This is just too much congress continues to take care of the capitalist instead of the ones whose actually doing the damn work. How long are we supposed to wait for the HELP we deserved especially when youve paid into this freaking system all your life now I received a call that they want to pick up mycar and it would've been paid off THIS YEAR!!!!!!! What are 2 million+ citizens of America supposed to do!!!!!!!! WE NED HELP NOW.

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 1 day ago

Sad but true

All our comments on here is only a way to get out our frustration. There is no politician that even cares enough as to what we have to say. They don't read or hear a word we are saying. THEY JUST DON'T CARE. They don't have to get up everyday and count their pennies to see if their family can eat or not. They don't care if we can get out and find work not. THEY JUST DON'T CARE. Democrat or Republican it doesn't matter. THEY JUST DON'T CARE. They are thieves, crooks, liars.. Watch the news. I will trust and insurance salesman or car salesman way before I ever THEY JUST DON'T CARE. Used to feel proud to be an American.. Would get more help from our government if I wasn't and American..

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 1 day ago

I hate to be the bearer of

I hate to be the bearer of bad news but I read on another website that even when the benefits have been restored, it could take up to three months before you get a check due to the huge amount to be paid out for the retroactive pay. And it may even be the discretion of the Governor of each state if they want to participate in the DOL program to even continue the work force program which is the department who distribute the checks.

 
True American wrote 35 weeks 2 days ago

If this continues for long, a

If this continues for long, a revolution or civil war will follow closely after.

 
JacquelineInPennsylvania wrote 35 weeks 2 days ago

Being Unemployed Is Unfair and it's Unamerican

The problem of long time rising unemployment is so much bigger than all of us, and the greedy politicians and corporations who make the rules of employment are the ones who are really at fault, not the citizens though the citizens are always blamed. Citizens are blamed for not being able to find a live-able wage job and they are blamed for not making enough money and not being able to spend more money as if that is something that we can control! If we the citizens could control unemployment we sure as hell would choose to. Because most people live within their means and they operate within a budget average citizens don't get themselves into financial trouble like government does because sensible spending controls the risk of financial failure. The problem of greed in people is so much bigger than us, the unemployed, and the minority rich in this country control the majority poor. More people are slipping into poverty every day and we're getting blamed for it adding insult to injury. Nothing is ever enough to pacify the greed of those who dictate who should be working where, and who should be earning how much... and those who dictate are the politicians who get their lives totally paid for by taxpayers and they are clueless how to live on the average citizen's wage because they have never earned it. Logic doesn't factor into the United States economy and neither does compassion that you will never get from snobby and outright ignorant politicians who need a rude awakening by visiting the unemployment line themselves in the next election.

 
SingleMomW/3children wrote 35 weeks 2 days ago

WTF IS REALLY GOING ON HERE??

At this point its really embarrassing to consider we are all Americans. Land of the beautiful and free.
Right? Funny, I'm feeling a little enslaved. I guess when the crime rate sky rockets and it affects the rich things will change. Until then we will continue to suffer, scrounge and beg for the basics to live and survive. Food, shelter and clothing to name just a few things.
They claim there's no money but they find millions to send overseas. smh
Remember this in the next election and get out there and vote all of these dick heads out so our children don't have to suffer and they can have a chance in life.

Im keeping you all in my prayers!!

 
MaryAnonymous wrote 35 weeks 3 days ago

Please extend this euc. My

Please extend this euc. My family is going hungry and I'm so depressed without a job, I don't want to depend on no euc, I want a job, I just need the money to find a job , please help our country instead of the rest of the countries!!!!!

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 3 days ago

Email Boenher...what a

Email Boenher...what a joke!!! WHOEVER VOTED FOR THAT DOUCHE BAG MUST OF BEEN ON CRACK!! LIKE TO SEE THAT BITCH LOOSE HIS HIGH PAYIN GIG!!!

 
JacquelineInPennsylvania wrote 35 weeks 3 days ago
 
John R Fugazzie wrote 35 weeks 3 days ago
 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 3 days ago

NOT HAPPENING

ITS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. why would they do it before now.. there no going ro pay all of us unemployed all of those proative money back.. NOT HAPPENING MOVE ON BE HAPPY....VOTE...

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 3 days ago

NOT HAPPENING

ITS NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. why would they do it before now.. there no going ro pay all of us unemployed all of those proative money back.. NOT HAPPENING MOVE ON BE HAPPY....VOTE...

 
Kevin A Compton wrote 35 weeks 3 days ago

EUC (unemployment)

Mr Boenher,

Get off your ass house,and pass the EUC Ive pawned family jewels,home is any day away from
forecloser,its sicking and on wellfare thanks.

Kevin A Compton
Baltimore MD

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 3 days ago

To ever make a difference

We need a face to represent the true American people.

 
sara wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

Extend it out until summer

Extend it out until summer then people have a better chance finding a job. Treat people better!

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

unemployment

I hope you all do the right thing for all of the people out of work....

 
Anonymou wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

euc

We are losing our soul when workers are neglected...This is America..not was...Mr. Bonner....please.relate...there is real suffering by good people...Most of yr culture would consider suicide if our plight was forced upon them.

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

unemployment

Everyone that is hurting from this is just going to go on welfare and where is that money coming from then? MAKES ABSOLUTELY NO SENSE AT ALL!!!!!!!!!!

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

I was evicted on March 5th....

at least when i was recieving the weekly beneifits i was able to keep my bills paid, now homeless and forced to start all over again. Thanks for leaving us hanging!

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

extended unemployment

help us in the united states where we will spend any money here at home we are suffering in america

 
Gary Shackelford wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

EUC BENEFITS!

RECESS THIS YOU IGNORANT FUCKS. WHILE YOUR ON RECESS THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE ARE GOING HUNGRY AND LOSING THEIR SHELTER. ENOUGH GAMES>

 
Reginald Mapp wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

EUC

We are enduring our worst winter in quite sometime and I have no money to look or find a job. Everyone including the US legislators are telling me to wait. MY renter and my bills cannot. I had to move to a shelter. How humiliating.

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

Weeks come n go and I don't

Weeks come n go and I don't have 1 in my pocket n it hurt..my n my kids would starve if it wasn't for my stamp

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

I lost my apt last week and

I lost my apt last week and am homeless now. Please help us! Restore the benefits please!

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

euc extension

Recess again.....and they call us lazy ?

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

not gonna happen

Look they are dragging this out an in the end the euc will be cancelled. Lets get real here its not gonna happen

 
Carlos wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

Email Boenher

This is going so far and far away...

We need the extension now.

 
Danielle wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

unemployment

Please restore benefits. We're struggling!!! on the brink of being evicted! One daughter in college. Another daughter is a senior in high school and going to college. Please help. I didn't ask to get laid off!!

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

I'm praying hard! Will email

I'm praying hard! Will email whom ever! I am homeless with 4 kids! So I need this bill to be passed so we can move from this hotel to a home

 
Rizz wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

Joke

Email Boenher hahaha what a joke! That asshole don't care don't waste your time. It's not going to happen he already said no retro and he was blocking it. Move on it's over!

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

unemployment

cutting off uc in the middle of one of the coldest winters...really

 
Janice Minor wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

Please pass the unemployment

Please pass the unemployment extension , Thursday, it's been a long wait .people has been suffering too long .. Please help the suffering people..

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

Extend benefits now. My son

Extend benefits now. My son and I depend on those funds. I stay away at nifht figuring out where our next meal is going to come from.

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

Recess

How many recess's do these people need .. They get more breaks than my children get from school

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

EUC Restoration

What are we waiting on NOW???

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

Many ppl blue and white

Many ppl blue and white collar citizens were effected by such crisis. I am in good faith that the many Americans will indeed resume a pusuit of life, and regain Independece again.

 
Anonymous wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

Extend Unemployment

Extend the program and contact John Boehner and leave a message with his office in DC.
John Boehner is going to cause a lot of people a lot of issues.

Good luck everyone.

 
NavyVet wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

I pray to god something works

I pray to god something works out. I have been devastated by this and look at being homeless.

 
BERNARD BARNETT wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

restore the funds.

PLEASE HELP US WE ARE HURTING!!

 
linda wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

unemployment

We need this extension now. Please everyone email boenher. I don't have anymore to sell.

 
linda wrote 35 weeks 4 days ago

unemployment

Please everyone. Email boenher. We need this extension. I am selling everything just to keep afloat. We didn't ask to be let go. We didn't ask for our senators to kick us when we're down. We need this now....

inspectorrandoness