MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WDHN) — Starting in June, Alabama will end all federally funded pandemic unemployment compensation programs, according to a statement released by Gov. Kay Ivey Monday.
These programs include:
- Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation — gives an additional $300 weekly payment to unemployment recipients
- Pandemic Unemployment Assistance — gives benefits for those who would not usually qualify, such as the self-employed, gig workers, and part-time workers
- Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation — extends benefits once their regular benefits expire
- Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation — provides an $100 to people with mixed earnings
Ivey said she made the change due to many businesses having a tough time finding enough people to hire for different job openings.
“As Alabama’s economy continues its recovery, we are hearing from more and more business owners and employers that it is increasingly difficult to find workers to fill available jobs, even though job openings are abundant,” Ivey said in the statement. “Among other factors, increased unemployment assistance, which was meant to be a short-term relief program during emergency related shutdowns, is now contributing to a labor shortage that is compromising the continuation of our economic recovery.”
The changes will take place June 19. Anyone who filed for unemployment in the weeks prior to the deadline will continue to be processed under the federal program requirements.
To qualify for unemployment, applicants will have to prove they are actively looking for a job again, a requirement that was waived during the pandemic.
“We have more posted job ads now than we did in either February or March 2020,” Alabama Department of Labor Secretary Fitzgerald Washington said. “Ads for workers in the leisure and hospitality industry are up by 73%. Overall, ads are up by nearly 40%. There are plenty of opportunities available in multiple industries in Alabama.”
Alabamians can get help finding a job through the Alabama Career Center System, which operates 53 centers.