FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 23, 2020
Harrisburg, PA – With the additional $600 federal unemployment benefit about to end, the Departments of Labor & Industry (L&I) and Human Services (DHS) are reminding Pennsylvanians that other state programs are available. The Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), which funds the extra $600 in unemployment compensation each week, ends July 25 unless extended by the federal government.
“L&I has helped get more than $13.8 billion from the FPUC program into the pockets of Pennsylvanians out of work because of COVID-19,” said L&I Secretary Jerry Oleksiak. “This extra $600 per week has been a lifeline for many people and the department has encouraged Congress to extend it. However, if the federal program does end, there are important state services available to help people.”
DHS’ programs are designed to help eligible Pennsylvanians who have lost income or employment meet essential needs until they are able to start work again. Public assistance programs help ensure that individuals and families can access health care, have enough food to eat, and can pay utilities – things everyone needs to stay healthy and safe and succeed in the workforce.
“The additional unemployment funds have been a lifeline that, in many cases, may be keeping people financially stable and able to meet essential needs despite losing employment,” said DHS Secretary Teresa Miller. “Without this income, people may not be able to make ends meet. I urge anyone who is losing their federal unemployment payment to apply for public assistance programs to see whether they may qualify. These programs exist to ease difficult times, and they will continue to be here for people during the weeks and months ahead.”
DHS has also received approval to administer benefits created specifically in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) Recovery Crisis Program, which provides assistance for home energy bills, helping ensure continuity of utility and other energy services. This program will run through August 31, 2020.
Pennsylvanians who have experienced a change in income or job loss, regardless of its relation to the COVID-19 pandemic, can apply for benefits online at any time at www.compass.state.pa.us.
In addition to these programs, PA CareerLink® offices are also providing virtual services to help connect businesses with job seekers and assist with résumés, career development activities and more.
Some of PA CareerLink’s® virtual services include:
For more information, visit www.pacareerlink.pa.gov.
While the FPUC program may end, eligible claimants waiting for a payment from claim weeks April 4 through July 25 will receive those payments.
MEDIA CONTACTS: Penny Ickes, L&I – firstname.lastname@example.org
Erin James, DHS – email@example.com