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Tillis, Burr Have No Plan as Federal Unemployment Expires in Just Two Weeks

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

July 16, 2020

Tillis, Burr Have No Plan as Federal Unemployment Expires in Just Two Weeks

As Pandemic Spreads and Job Losses Continue, Conservative Economist Calls for UI Extension

Raleigh, N.C. - With less than two weeks until expanded federal unemployment insurance expires, the U.S. Department of Labor reported today that 26,861 North Carolinians filed initial unemployment claims this past week. More than 1.1 million North Carolinians have lost their jobs and filed for unemployment insurance since the pandemic began. Expanded federal unemployment payments provided by Congress in the CARES Act are set to expire on July 31.


If federal unemployment insurance is cut, average weekly payments in North Carolina will drop from $877 to just $277. One North Carolinian told Bloomberg News this week that without federal unemployment, she didn’t know if she would “be able to make my bills or buy enough food.” Even an economist at the conservative Tax Foundation is now calling for unemployment to be extended as part of the next federal relief package.


“In two weeks, hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians face the looming threat of another devastating pay cut, yet Senator Tillis and Senator Burr have no plan to extend federal unemployment insurance,” said Piedmont Rising Executive Director Casey Wilkinson. “The pandemic is ongoing, thousands are still losing their jobs each week, and many North Carolina families are running out of time. Tillis and Burr must commit to extending expanded federal unemployment insurance beyond July so that struggling North Carolinians can pay for food, housing, health care, and other basic living expenses they need to survive.”


Earlier this month, Senator Tillis said that extending federal $600 weekly payments beyond July 31 may “make the problem worse.” Senator Richard Burr has refused to comment.


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