Over a Million People Losing Unemployment Benefits
By Stephanie Glover, Web Producer/Digital Journalist - email
Unemployment checks will stop coming for more than a million people as of Saturday.
The end of the federal government's five-year emergency unemployment compensation program means people out of work will lose their average monthly payments of $1,166.
The unemployed is required to seek work in order to receive unemployment benefits. As benefits disappear, some jobless people will stop looking for work out of frustration and will no longer be counted as unemployed. This would result in deceptive drop in the nation’s unemployment rate.
The trend has already started in North Carolina, which started cutting off extended benefits in July. The state's unemployment rate went down — from 8.8 percent in June to 7.4 percent in November— even though the number of North Carolinians who said they had jobs increased only slightly in that time.
The benefits enacted during the President George W. Bush administration were meant to be a cushion for unemployed victims of a recession whose state benefits expired.
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