New Jobless Numbers Highlight Need for Robust Unemployment Benefits
New Jobless Numbers Highlight Need for Robust Unemployment Benefits that Senator Tillis Has Repeatedly Fought Against
As NC House Speaker, Tillis Turned North Carolina’s Unemployment Insurance Program into One of the Worst in the U.S.
As U.S. Senator, Tillis Last Month Voted to Stop Unemployed North Carolinians from Getting an Extra $600 in the Middle of a Crisis
Raleigh, N.C. — Piedmont Rising Executive Director Casey Wilkinson released the following statement as the U.S. Department of Labor reports that the number of North Carolinians filing for unemployment insurance has surpassed 600,000:
“The hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians filing for unemployment insurance will find far less relief than out-of-work Americans in other states thanks to Thom Tillis, who led the effort to make unemployment benefits in our state some of the weakest in the country. But that wasn’t enough. Just last month, adding insult to injury, Tillis voted to stop an increase of $600 in unemployment benefits in the middle of this crisis.
"Senator Tillis continues to fail us, just as he did when he voted repeatedly to tear down health protections for North Carolina’s most vulnerable. Unemployment during a public health and economic crisis is not a choice, but protecting the well-being of those who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own is. Senator Tillis must stop voting against relief for North Carolinians who desperately need it.”
Tillis’ history of restricting unemployment benefits dates back to his time as the Speaker of the North Carolina House of Representatives when he fought to reduce eligibility and “touted the benefit reductions.” Tillis and Burr voted last month to stop an expansion of unemployment benefits for those affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
Nearly 600,000 North Carolinians had filed for unemployment since mid-March. That’s more than one-tenth of the entire state workforce.
The Division of Employment Security has made more than $100 million in FPUC payments to North Carolina residents receiving unemployment assistance, ahead of its timeline to begin FPUC payments by April 17.
About Piedmont Rising Piedmont Rising is a 501 (c)4 issue advocacy organization built by and for North Carolinians to advocate for lower insurance premiums and prescription drug costs and to ensure that more people have access to safe and affordable health care. Through grassroots organizing, education, and engagement, we are amplifying our health care stories and holding our elected officials accountable to the people, and issues they were elected to represent. www.piedmontrising.org