Eliminating Barriers for Unemployed Workers

Eliminating Barriers for Unemployed Workers

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The Coronavirus certainly made 2020 a year to forget, especially for many hard working union members with careers in retail, entertainment, and hospitality. With the economy locked in a pandemic freeze, workers were forced to turn to a safety net to try to make ends meet. Unfortunately, Missouri has some of the lowest unemployment benefits in the country – cruelly paired with multiple hurdles to qualifying, like a one-week waiting period and job search requirements that were impossible to meet during this economic catastrophe. MO JWJ supporters mobilized to demand Governor Parsons relax these requirements and allow workers, including gig workers, more clear, streamlined, and reasonable access to the benefits they deserve and need to make ends meet. In June, the Governor met our demands and suspended work search requirements and other barriers to access. This was a critical victory to remove roadblocks to care, but we know we still have a long way to go to building an economy that provides for all of us – no matter what.