Thursday, May 19, 2011

Stop UC Cuts in Pennsylvania

FEMA - 29783 - Workers unemployed by the freeze in CaliforniaA bill that would drastically cut Unemployment Compensation (UC) benefits for large numbers of Pennsylvania's unemployed is moving in the General Assembly, and votes are expected as early as Monday, May 23.

HB 916 would make permanent, harmful reductions in benefit amounts and weeks of eligibility for many of Pennsylvania's unemployed workers, as well as disqualify many unemployed workers entirely.

Please act now to tell our PA legislators to oppose UC cuts in PA.

HB 916 would harm Pennsylvania's unemployed workers in the following ways:

  • Lowering benefits amounts ($463 million in cuts annually) and reducing the number of weeks that many unemployed could get benefits (another $48 million in cuts annually).
  • Changing the definition of “willful misconduct” to deny UC benefits to workers whose mistakes were not intentional.
  • Denying UC benefits to workers forced to leave their jobs for family or medical reasons—those fleeing domestic violence, dealing with lost child or elder care, providing care for sick family members, or suffering from medical conditions that prevent them from performing their jobs.
  • Offsetting 100% of severance payments, even if those payments are required by law or contract.

Supporters of HB 916 claim that it is needed because the UC Trust Fund, out of which benefits are paid, is out of money and borrowing from the federal government. But they would deal with the debt entirely by cutting UC benefits to the unemployed, and employers would not be required to pay their fair share.

Act now to send a message to your State Representative.

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