EYEWITNESS LOCAL NEWSEMERGENCY UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION
from Eyewitness News Online
Federal Emergency Benefits For Unemployed Set To Expire
Reported by: Kennie Bass
Videographer: John Tincher
Web Producer: Kennie Bass
Reported: Dec. 14, 2012 5:25 PM EST
Updated: Dec. 14, 2012 8:23 PM EST
Charleston , Kanawha County , West Virginia
Unless Congress acts, federal emergency benefits for the unemployed expire on December 29th.
Emergency Unemployment Compensation kicks in for people who have already used their regular 26 weeks of unemployment benefits. But that safety net could be going away.
"We're talking about 10,600 West Virginians affected and they could be losing a maximum of 425 dollars a week," Courtney Sisk of Workforce West Virginia said.
The program has a big impact locally. Workforce West Virginia's Charleston office handles nearly 18 percent of the emergency unemployment claims. 1,906 people living in Kanawha and surrounding counties are in danger of losing between $274 and $424 a week.
"People aren't going to have money to feed their families or pay their bills so it will probably cost a lot more money to send everybody to DHHR," Elizabeth Banks of East Bank said.
"It would be wrong to take things from people. If they take it away then there's gonna be so many people on the streets," Shiann Rose of St. Albans said.
Sisk says if you're out of a job, Workforce West Virginia provides training and programs designed to help you get hired. She added that even if the federal benefits expire, it will have no impact on state unemployment benefits. Eligible people can receive up to 26 weeks of assistance.
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