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Federal Unemployment Benefits Expire for Millions of Americans

As of late Sunday night, federal unemployment benefits expired for millions of Americans.

That includes about 3 million Californians. It’s what many have called a lifeline during this pandemic.

It includes about a million self-employed, part time, contract workers or gig employees who will lose benefits completely.

Also, anyone who does not qualify for state unemployment benefits, about 2 million Californians who are on extended benefits, those who have completed 26 weeks or more of unemployment.

Also, those who still qualify for regular unemployment will no longer be receiving the additional $300 a week in federal aid.

Former EDD director Michael Bernicks told NBC Bay Area Sunday that considering how many people in California remain unemployed, it will be a huge change.

“What’s different today is that I see is that the return to work is much more hesitant,” he said. “Part of that is the health concern, part of that is childcare and part of that is reconsidering their occupations.”

More than 20 states voluntarily ended their federal unemployment benefits months ago as they are hoping to get more people back into the workforce.

“The number of job seekers has picked up,” Bernicks said.

But officials said it doesn’t mean everyone will get back to work right away.

“We are hoping that this will help kickstart many aspects of the labor market to bring the job seekers back, said Bob Lanter, executive director of Cal Workforce.

The turning point in benefits is something businesses in San Francisco are looking forward to.

Re-staffing has been the biggest challenge for Moki’s in San Francisco’s Bernal Heights neighborhood.

“We sent them the letters, texts emails asking them to come back but we didn’t get any response. Nobody call at all,” said Ann Singhaklangpol, manager of Moki’s.

Source: NBC Bay Area

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