Personal Stories

Report: Unemployment Insurance And What Happens To People Who Run Out

Feb 23 2012

By Arthur Delaney
From Huffington Post

David Arrieta said he received his final $214 unemployment insurance check last week after losing his office manager job in August 2010.

"Hopefully I'll get hired," Arrieta said. "Hopefully we can rebound."

In case that doesn't happen right away, Arrieta, who lives in Scottsdale, Ariz., with his wife and three kids, said he cashed out his retirement account and is in the process of selling off personal possessions so his family can move into more affordable housing.

Millions of people have run out of unemployment insurance without finding work since the start of the Great Recession in 2007, and the government wants to know: What happens to them? Many politicians have worried the long-term jobless will wind up in another part of the safety net; others assume the unemployed are holding out for high-paying jobs and will take what they can get when their benefits run out. Available data show neither scenario offers a complete picture.

News: Jobless tell Murray of struggles getting by

Jan 12 2012

From The Seattle Times:

Every morning James Henry, 41, gets up and heads to the union hall, hoping for work.

The Seattle-area construction worker is looking for a job to support his wife, Tammy; buy diapers for the couple's infant daughter, Samantha; and pay his mortgage. He has one week of unemployment benefits left until he needs to apply for an extension. In the meantime, foreclosure is looming.

"I'm a responsible adult. I pay my bills, you know?" Henry told Sen. Patty Murray at a Seattle home Wednesday morning. "But when it comes to a choice between being able to pay for day care so that I can go look for a job and making my mortgage payment, I'm not paying my mortgage payment, and that's just the way it is."

When the Democratic senator asked email subscribers to contact her with stories about unemployment, Natalie Simmons, who lives with her husband on the 5500 block of Wilson Avenue South in Seward Park, invited Murray to their home.