“With higher rates of existing poverty in this economy, the impact of cutting long term unemployment insurance is drastic,” said Johanna Hester, APALA National President. “Unemployment insurance assistance provides vulnerable AAPI families a lifeline and a sense of security while they strive to get back on their feet. Failing to extend unemployment benefits forces at risk communities to be on the verge chronic poverty, bankruptcy, and even foreclosure.”
Nearly 1.7 million long-term unemployed Americans no longer have the vital income previously depended on from federal unemployment programs. The average unemployment duration is 37.1 weeks, 11 weeks longer than what maximum state benefits provide. Eliminating unemployment benefits severely impacts those jobless Americans that desperately need financial support, including many in the AAPI community, as they continue looking diligently for work.
“Despite a strong bi-partisan effort, a small minority of Senators prevented vulnerable families from gaining the financial assistance they need,“ said Gregory Cendana, APALA Executive Director. “We must remind the Senators who voted no that struggling jobless workers need support in these times of hardship. Unemployment insurance benefits must be renewed immediately and APALA will continue to organize until this happens."