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ICYMI: ProPublica Finds North Carolina is “Worst State to Be Unemployed”

ICYMI: ProPublica Finds North Carolina is “Worst State to Be Unemployed”

Investigation Demonstrates Urgency for Tillis, Burr Not to Cut Unemployment Insurance

RALEIGH, N.C. - Today, ProPublica published an investigation into North Carolina’s unemployment system, declaring the state to be the “worst state to be unemployed.” The story tracks one unemployed grocery store worker’s struggle to get unemployment insurance. Because of cuts made by the General Assembly under then-Speaker Thom Tillis’ leadership in 2013, North Carolina has one of the shortest eligibility periods and pays some of the lowest amounts in the country.


If Congress does not act in July, unemployed North Carolinians will see a $600 pay cut next month, even as the jobless rate remains in the double digits and the country continues to struggle to contain the coronavirus.


“Hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians cannot afford a $600 pay cut as they struggle  to afford basic expenses like rent, prescription drugs and insurance premiums,” said Piedmont Rising Executive Director Casey Wilkinson. “Senator Tillis and Senator Burr must commit to extending federal unemployment insurance beyond July 31 to offset North Carolina’s insufficient state system, a system Senator Tillis was an ‘architect’ in designing. North Carolinians cannot afford a pandemic pay cut.”


Background:

  • In 2013, the North Carolina General Assembly cut weekly unemployment insurance from $530 down to $350, and eligibility from 26 weeks to 12 weeks. Then-House Speaker Thom TIllis helped lead efforts to make the cuts

  • Today, North Carolina has some of the worst unemployment insurance in the country

  • In April, Senators Thom Tillis and Richard Burr voted to remove $600 per week in federal unemployment insurance from the CARES Act

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