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No unemployment extension yet - some see extension of benefits as a way to keep people from working

It's time to take action!
It's time to take action!
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Well, here we are, another weekend without the federal extension of unemployment being passed.

Will the Senate try again before the Fourth of July Holiday break?

Who knows?

As reported by the Huffington Post, House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi fears the U.S. Economy could slip back into another recession, one which, for many workers, has never gone away.

The bill, commonly known as the "tax extenders bill" failed for the third time in the Senate on Thursday, June 24th.

The Huffington Post quotes California Senator Diane Feinstein, who is in favor of the bill as saying

"We have 99 weeks of unemployment insurance now. The question comes, how long do you continue that before people just don't go back to work at all?" she said. "Unemployment insurance has never carried the heavy weight that it does right now, the cost that it does right now, so people are concerned. And there isn't a lot of documentation on this. Last night for the first time I had somebody from a company tell me they've offered jobs to individuals and they said well, 'I want to not come back to work until my unemployment insurance runs out.' So we need to start looking at these things. And, we need to start paying for it."

According to the National Employment Law Project, since 1959, the U.S. Government has  extended unemployment benefits when the unemployment rate is above 7.2%. 

It seems that some Senators feel the lure of $380 a week in unemployment benefits (the national average) keep the unemployed living large and living lazy.

As suggested by one reader, I have forwarded a few of your comments to Rick Sanchez, a reporter on CNN in the hopes of getting more news coverage about unemployed Americans and the importance of passing this bill.

From your recent comments, I know many of you are at the end of your rope. 

Following are some websites which may provide some answers, and do provide a way to advocate for the extension of federal unemployment benefits and for a tier five unemployment extension.

The National Law Project, or NELP, also has a site for unemployed workers, which includes information about getting  involved, an explanation of the different tiers of the federal unemployment extensions, health insurance premium assistance, and more.

if you are in need of more help or need to vent, check out the Unemployment Lifeline.  This site includes a search function for local resources which provide help with various needs such as child care, utilities,  general emergencies, food, housing and family services. 

There's also the "Break Room", where you can post questions, comments and gather information from other unemployed Americans.

Keep calling your Senators and Representatives.  If you don't live in Massachusetts, you can find contact information here.

Take care, thanks for reading, thank you for your comments and try to keep your chin up.


Oh, and remember to "live large" :) on that huge unemployment check.

P.S. Please remember, the current bill in the Senate only extends the time an unemployed individual may apply for tiers 1-4.  It does not create a tier 5.

Comments

  • Shamontiel (Chicago News & Events Examiner) 4 years ago

    I'm completely baffled about why someone would say they didn't want to start work until the unemployment runs out. I'd like to meet that person just to find out what brain cells are dead.

  • Ray 4 years ago

    Do politicians even understand the legislation they are voting on?
    We have 99 weeks of unemployment benefits now?
    Correct me if I'm wrong, but unless extended benefits are renewed, many people won't get more than 26 weeks.

  • nancyorva 4 years ago

    You should be fined for not having insurance because if you have an emergency and go to the emergency room, then you do not have the money for the bill, it gets charged to everyone else. Get medical insurance for your entire family at the best price from www.bit.ly/9sfoMb By contributing to the pool and doing your part, overall costs come down. Its like stores that have to charge more because of all the theft. People go to the hospital and then not pay, it gets charged to everyone else.

  • Len 4 years ago

    I only WISH unemployment paid $380/wk. Such a Ntl Avg indicates alot of white collar workers are out of work. No wonder Republicans think such people are looking for a vacation and hang at Starbucks. Ever try minimum wage or just over because that's all you can find AFTER losing that 'white collar' job due to cuts and THEN losing the minimum wage job due to recession... THEN trying to live on what you get in UI when that job disappears?

    Why can't this be a stand alone bill; Snowe says she'd vote for it then? Why can't it be paid for with unspent stimulus monies? Why do Republicans vote for TARP, Stimulus, Doctors-fix, et al., but can't vote for the ordinary citizens who have lost and can't find work through no fault of their own (a requirement to qualify for UI)?! Democrats want to blame Republicans and vice versa?

    How about making sure people can put food on the table rather than focus on campaign contributors and politics?!

  • Bryan 4 years ago

    I understand there are some people taking advantage of these benefits, but where I live there are 6 applicants for every job available. I wake up at 3am every morning to apply online, then hit the road around 8am to any and every place I see to put an application in. I have a great work history, 10 years with one company,(I'm 27) and the only time I took off was when my father passed away. I lost my job because of the poor economy, and my company had to release 60 people. I would be on tier 2 if they pass this. This is not luxury money, it's to help with food, rent, car payment, and gas. One more thing, we have to prove, at least in Indiana, that we are actively looking for work though Workone. If they can't help find a job for you, then you know this is a major problem. We just need some help paying for essential items. Trust me, I would rather work all day than collect unemployment. There is no self satisfaction from this money.I hope they can do it soon might lose my car.

  • JustThinking 4 years ago

    If the job being offered pays less than the unemployment benefit, then yes, I can see why someone might turn down the job hoping that they might be offered a job that pays more if they just keep trying. If you take a job you're at the job and you don't have the same amount of time to devote to job searches and interviewing, so it makes sense.

  • Easy Writer 4 years ago

    Anecdotal stories, like the one of the person who didn't want to go back to work, are just propaganda designed to "liquidated" (let's call it) the unemployed.

    Now, here's an anecdotal story in support of the extensions.

    Watch how easy it is to write:

    --Last night I had somebody from a big corporation tell me that they are working to end the unemployment extensions so that they can cut the wages of their current work force!

    They went on to tell me that 'we would love to see an end of unemployment, all together, and we're hoping that over-work and poverty will cause our employees to either quit or die before they are 50 years of age. We want young workers or big life insurance payouts as compensation for employing these turkeys all of these years!'

    She went on to say 'how long should we carry an employee? I mean, past 40 they're kind of slow and not so nice to look at!'--

    So, we need to fund the unemployment extensions. And, we need to find a way to pay for it!

    --S

  • Brock 4 years ago

    I find it interesting that there is a body of people in this country that get paid to contemplate these issues. Even better they seem to always be taking time off. How much of the taxpayers money has been lost by these bozos in Washington just from going to work day after day and not getting anything done. Over 500 members in congress plus each one has an office and staff. It only took 3 days and 5 pieces of paper for you to bail out the banks. And what was is they did with that money? Oh yeah it helped pay 7 figure bonuses to the pricks that caused it in the first place. All it would take is one tenth of the bailout money to fund UI for a whole year. Americans use to care about one another? Now our government is for the corperation not for the people. In any REAL working situation all of you would have been fired long ago for lack of productivity. UI is a no brainer. It is basic commen sense. I think congress should be drug tested and take a paycut as well as lose half their vacation

  • JN 4 years ago

    $380 average UI check. HUh?????????? Its actually like $280-$325. Please get your fats straight.

  • CT 4 years ago

    Its easy get off the UE like me and just kill yourselk

  • James 4 years ago

    I live in Elkhart IN also and concur with Brian; this story exposes the exact cause of the Great Recession, The Huffington Post quotes California Senator Diane Feinstein, who is in favor of the bill as saying, “Last night for the first time I had somebody from a company tell me they've offered jobs to individuals and they said well, 'I want to not come back to work until my unemployment insurance runs out.' So we need to start looking at these things. And, we need to start paying for it."

    The cause of this recession is that our legislative branch already had the tools in place that would have prevented this economic disaster in the first place, but they fail to police the agencies that they entrusted with that power to enforce those laws. My question for Senator Feinstein would be, is this businessman’s claim being vetted for accuracy and the legally required recipient fraud report? Considering that this third party claim appears to have been made less than 24 hours after the time o

  • mygurls &me 4 years ago

    Actually speaking from experience, some people that I assist with their unemployment ( since i'm on the inside looking out) seem not to want to find a job until "push comes to shove". I actually spoke with some who's claim I was assisting them with & they actually made the statement " well i guess now the only thing for me to do is start looking for a job". & i stated isn't this what you were suppose to be doing since 2007..yep you got it 2007 this person has been riding the unemployment horse & it finally ended. This is one story of quite a few that have amazed me.Then of course there's the flip side of this with those people whose income was like 100,000 a year, who feel that 9 or 10 dollars is beneath them. True it may not replace what they were making but in some states this is more than what is paid in a week of unemployment. so yes there are legit people who can't find work,& also those that don't want to work & those whose mentality or pride stops them from accepting work.

  • James 4 years ago

    The cause of this recession is that our legislative branch already had the tools in place that would have prevented this economic disaster in the first place, but they fail to police the agencies that they entrusted with that power to enforce those laws. My question for Senator Feinstein would be, is this businessman’s claim being vetted for accuracy and the legally required recipient fraud report? Considering that this third party claim appears to have been made less than 24 hours after the time of statement, I doubt that any valuable amount of vetting could have been accomplished which makes it suspect.

    In the event that the UI recipient truly did make that statement to the employer; did the employer report this fraud and has the claimant been disqualified for failure to accept employment as required by law? On the other hand, if this is a baseless claim by the employer and a fraud claim does not exist; has this employer been cited for false reporting? And third, if this conversat

  • James 4 years ago

    The unemployed are not just being thrown under the bus, our politicians are driving the bus and changed direction so frequently that they have already ran over us two or three times. I am incensed by the proliferation of misinformation for politicizing purposes, this comment needs to be researched and reported by our media services.

  • Terry 4 years ago

    Show me where I can find a job and I will take it. These people are idiots. But i guess that is what happens when you are sitting in the lap of luxury and everything is being handed to you on a silver platter. The plight of the common man is no longer an issue to you.

  • stephanie 4 years ago

    I do not believe that there is such a person, who made that statement that is something that the senate has made up, stop making -up stories and deal with the real facts THERE'S NO JOBS AND THERE;S NO JOB THAT A PERSON WHO HAS RENT,FOOD ,GAS AND OTHER THINGS TO TAKE CARE OF WOULD TURN DOWN A PAY CHECK.

  • Unemployed 6 months 4 years ago

    I agree with Stephanie, the Senator supposedly heard this comment from 1 person & this is taken as gospel to speak for everyone on unemployment. What about the millions that have lost their benefits and would rather have a regular paycheck? Hmmm – a million to one.

  • James 4 years ago

    How stupid you people all are. Extending unemployment is a waste of time. Everyone unemployed needs to take a honest job and move on with their life. There are plenty of jobs that pay minimum wage open at malls, gas stations, ect. Maybe you need to take 2-3 to make it but you will be working. Life only moves forward when you take responsibility for yourself. The longer you remain collecting unemployment the more likely you will never find work.

  • unionman 4 years ago

    dont foreget to takeaway the $25 a week. I wounder how many people actually were able to get their 99 weeks? most it took 70 to 80 weeks to find a job, why are we being punished?

  • unionman 4 years ago

    we r done for, i will be homeless next week. to "get by" we are getting divorced. My life is over. So is america.

  • Jack 4 years ago

    I lost a fair paying job with cutbacks two years ago and was forced to take an $8.50 an hr. job. I worked that for almost two years. I couldn't even get an interview for other jobs since there were roughly 100 applicants for every position. The recession hit harder here than many places. I had not gotten a raise in that two years even though the manager admitted I deserved it. He asked the owner about a 25 - 50 cent an hour raise fo me and I had my hours cut then was let go. They didn't hire anyone else because sales were so far down.

    My unemployment and extension was no where near $300 a week. I was working one of those $8.50 an hr. jobs even though my qualifications are good and I was working a much higher paying job previously.

    I have not been able to find another job. Our county's unemployment is high. Don't tell me about all those people turning down work. As the one guy in bankruptcy court told the judge, give me a broom and I'll sweep the courtroom.

  • danielle 4 years ago

    These people don't know what they are giving out I only got half of one extension and it was cut off June 2. They first told me was until August. When June 2 came everybody was cut off no matter where they was in the extension.

  • Alice 4 years ago

    When does unemployment stop? Should we just continue to extend and extend. Good jobs are not coming back people, wake up! We have retail, restaurants and minimum wage. How our economy is now is how its going to be. Get used to it. Life as you knew it is over. Millions have to change their attitude. Try opening your own business, plenty of loans for that. Do something online. There are so many options. . .unfortunately, so many were living high on the hog and spending far more than they earned that now they are in big trouble. A life lesson. Buck up. Those that lived through the Depression in the 1930s survived and eventually thrived - things were much worse. We can survive a recession, we have before.

  • cindy 4 years ago

    My husband and I have both been on unemployment since January. Our 26 weeks end in July. So far our income has dropped by 40% this year. With sacrificing and cutting back we have a whole whopping $25 left at the end of the month. So for someone to suggest that I would rather sit home and collect unemployment instead of finding a job is so wrong. I have been looking with no luck. OH, by the way, I was told through a friend whose son in law is a manager at a company that my application is not even considered based on 2 reasons. 1. Once a job opens up in my field I would end my employment with them. They are looking for long term employees. 2. My previous wage. So, please don't put me in the same category as ones who are riding the unemployment line. I would accept a job if they would give me the courtesy of a phone call, because in a few short weeks our income will fall by 100%.

  • unionman 4 years ago

    James do us all a favor, go spew youre bile somewhere els. i dont think anyone here is the the mood atm.

  • danielle 4 years ago

    They need to look at welfare people they had on the news the other day 1.8 million taken from ATM at a casino with there Welfare debit card. Welfare people more or less don't want to work Unemployment people like to work get it straight.

  • danielle 4 years ago

    Alice and James need to come back to 2010. There are no jobs everyone is pushing for a small business to hire. Small business is not going to pay any money. If you was making $70,000 a year I am pretty sure you have a car and house etc. Minimum wage is for if you live with your momma. It for extra money if you have a full time job. Alice and James must have jobs so why are you even on this message board. This is for the unemployed that have put in dozens of resumes and besides it is summer don't you think the kids out of school are working all the Walmart,Target,CVS jobs. YOu two need to go somewhere with that nonsense you are talking.

  • James 4 years ago

    Hopefully they will separate the unemployment portion out of this bill and pass the extension next week. The unemployed deserve to be provided the extension that they have promised. It's just the republicans do not have the honor to keep their promises.

  • danielle 4 years ago

    I am living big I only get $254 every two weeks that is $126 a week. I get it one day the next day it is gone. I pay bills with it to help my husband who has a job. Unlike welfare people they spend it at the casino. lol

  • Linda 4 years ago

    It is easy for those employed to judge those who are not. For those who are not we really need the help especially the 99er's who now will have nothing coming in to help us get by. How are we going to pay for ANYTHING? wE WILL BE FORECLOSING ON OUR MTGS. AND DEFAULTING ON SCHOOL LOANS AND NOT PAYING BILLS. When they take our cars we won't even be able to get to a job. 99er's are 1 step being homeless. Then what will economy be like?

  • Unemployed 6 months 4 years ago

    @ James, have you applied for any minimum wage jobs at the mall or gas station lately? Or even Wal-Mart? As Cindy stated, they look at how much we used to make & decide that we will not be lon-term employees and would rather hire a teenager.
    @ Alice, you and a lot of people keep mentioning the Great Depression. This is 2010 & you can not make it the way that they did in the 30’s. Do you actually know how they made it then? Were you there? How many people didn’t make it through the Great Depression?

  • unionman 4 years ago

    they tried the stand alone last week. It was Objected by minority leader Sen. Mitch Mconnell -(R) ky

  • Debbie 4 years ago

    This article makes it sound like everyone gets 99 weeks of unemployment. That could not be farther from the truth. I am in tier1 (26 weeks + 20 weeks) no where near 99 weeks. Now I see that the President wants his financial reforms by the 4th of July, and some of it has to get through both houses of Congress. The financial laws will do nothing to generate employment and he does not seem very interested in that or unemployment extensions.

  • unionman 4 years ago

    it cannot and shall not ever pass by excetuive order, it is unconstiutinal. something about tyrants an kings

  • unionman 4 years ago

    Dont, pass a damn thing, ever again till this gets passed. I dont care if the entire Govt. is shut down.

  • pete 4 years ago

    Get rid of the illegals and we'll have plenty of jobs for all AMERICANS!!! Start by going after the people that hire the illegals.

  • danielle 4 years ago

    I am trying to work it out I have become a Travel Agent but nobody is taking trips..I have become a Network Marketing person that is working a little giving me some money when I need it. I have home parties and vend at events. I actually have 3 companies I joined to make some money. They have great products that are sellable and I like them myself. I have so many friends that has joined Network Marketing businesses it is crazy. From body magic to mary kay people are doing anything to make it so don't call us lazy. Soulpurpose.com

  • gary 4 years ago

    You're right on the money,Pete.

  • unionman 4 years ago

    THE only way this is going to get passed, is if Snowe, brown and liberman get on board. (with the stand alone measure). Snowe said she will vote for it, Joe Lieb. said he will if Ried can get 59 votes, and Brown replaced Ted Kennedy, 200k in MA? laid off. I say to the people of MA, you voted for him,(brown) now sleep in the bed that you made. (and so will the rest of our decaying society).

  • unionman 4 years ago

    IF ANYONE, thinks its bad now, wait a cpl of more weeks. dont be surprized if a nut ball heads off to the capitol with nothing left to live for.

  • unionman 4 years ago

    i know for a fact that 99 weeks would have kept me alive till i got another job. It makes me sick to know that myself and others have put their life on the line to protect the rights of these people. they should be stripped of their citizenship,and exiled from our country.

  • unionman 4 years ago

    All i want to do now is to go to capitol hill, and punch a republican senator right in his mouth.

  • bigbase2002 4 years ago

    Just wait until november when all those seantors (including dems b/c they just couldnt put the unemployment by itself) are out of work because everyone knows that all of these americans who are out of work and cant find jobs are not going to vote for then. I have been drawing it myself and didnt reach 99 weeks but i am still unable to get anymore benefits i just thank God that i have a good promise of a job starting next week but whats going to happen with everyone else with nothing coming in they talk about a recession now but i think its time they start saying depression b/c without people putting money back into the economy then small buisness will start feeling the efects and so on and so on creating a domino affect. But giving money to other countries and welfare people is ok but not the people who have worked thier whole lives. I tell you i cant wait to see what happens in november.

  • CONCERNED IN TENNESSEE 4 years ago

    *****ATTENTION UNEMPLOYED FRIENDS*****
    I DON'T BELIEVE EMAILING,PHONING,FAXING, ETC. SENATORS ABOUT THIS WILL DO ANY GOOD. JUST GETS SCREENED OR DELETED. WHAT WE NEED IS "EXPOSURE NOW".... WHY NOT EVERYBODY TRY SLAMMING YOUR LOCAL NEWS STATIONS AND THE BIG NATIONAL NEWS STATIONS AND DEMAND MORE NEWS COVERAGE ABOUT THIS ISSUE! MAYBE, ENOUGH NEGATIVE NEWS REPORTS ABOUT THIS MIGHT GET THE IDIOTS ATTENTION IN WASHINGTON. IF ENOUGH OF US DO THIS NATION-WIDE, WHO KNOWS? IT MAY HELP. TELL THESE NEWS EDITORS THAT..WE THE UNEMPLOYED HAVE OUR OWN REPS. RIGHT NOW GATHERING INFORMATION ON THE WHEREABOUTS OF THESE SENATORS THEIR EXTENDED FAMILYS AND WE ARE ORGANIZING MASSIVE DEMOSTRATIONS AS CLOSE AS WE CAN GET TO THEIR DOOR-STEPS. LIKE I SAID, IF WE CAN INFLUNCE THE NEWS MEDIA TO MAKE THEM LOOK BAD ENOUGH, MAYBE THEY WILL GO AHEAD AND PASS THE BILL. WHO CAN TRUELY WAIT UNTIL NOVEMBER IN HOPES OF VOTING THEM OUT...BESIDES, THEY WILL PROBABLY BUY THEIR WAY BACK IN ANYWAY!!
    GOOD LUCK TO ALL OF YOU

  • Tom 4 years ago

    Some of you people are obviously employed like Alice and I think they need to Shut up and get off this board.. I was an IT professional and made a decent salary. Big companies have outsourced all our jobs to India, Brazil, etc for cheap labor. Now you make it sound like this is my fault and to get a minimum wage job at walmart.. what about all the time and money i invested in Information Technology. Now I have a mortgage to pay and a family to support.. my idea is to stop outsourcing and start making things in america again. i can't believe we are a country all about finding ways to make the rich richer. it's disgusting when it comes at the expense of punishing the middle class.. so get off this borard Alice!!

  • In a sad state 4 years ago

    I can't believe that any educated person could say that unemployment $ is "living large" Try paying rent, insurance, gas, food, utilities etc on $380/week. Let's ask the Senators to do that for a month and let them see how it feels. I have a detail record of my continued job search and anyone can see from it that I have not missed a week without looking for a job. College educated, I cannot even get a job (which I'm willing to take) at any retail or food provider. President Obama, this is a state of emergency! In 40 years I've never been unemployed for more than 3 months. This time, I'm going on a year now.

  • unionman 4 years ago

    the only reason we survived the great depression? WW2

  • Jennifer sanchez 4 years ago

    Senator Diane Feinstein should have had those employers report those alleged "living large" losers who would rather collect unemployment than work. Unfortunately, there will ALWAYS be some people who will try to take advantage of the system. I know of people taking advantage of disability, food stamps, medicaid, etc., but i don't see the government taking away these programs! That's what fraud investigation is for. I've recently lost my employment benefits and still desperately looking for work. My situation is dire and believe me I have applied left and right and my phone is always by my side. EVERY TIME MY PHONE RINGS, I'M PRAYING ITS FOR A JOB, INSTEAD ITS A BILL COLLECTOR!!!!

  • Ron 4 years ago

    Unemployment insurance doesn't pay enough for people to spend like they are accustomed. Consequently, they are going deeper and deeper into poverty and won't take a job or two because they would lose their benefits. It's a no win situation until Congress limits these benefits to 26 weeks like it was designed. I feel sorry for people who are hurting, but feel that you have to force them off of these handouts so they will get out there and find work. It will be the absolute best for the unemployed to cut off their entitlements, as then they will make a living not dependent on the government.

  • unionman 4 years ago

    If anyone thinks its the DNC, they did try to pass stand alone, "hamburger face" said no. The DNC tried to pass the GOP version that was paid for using TARP money, the GOP said NO, The GOP had a plan that was "paid for?" using money that is earmarked for other things like food stamps,mine inspections, ect ect ect. you cant rob peter to pay paul. To make one american suffer to pay for another is not the way. IF ANYONE THINKS THIS IS MESSES UP NOW!! keep voteing for republicans, just ask Mass.

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