Mar 13, 2014 | By Marge Clark, BVM
There is a glimmer of hope for the over two million American workers whose unemployment benefits have ended. A deal was announced this afternoon, which will be presented to the Senate for a vote after next week’s recess. A bipartisan group of ten Senators developed a compromise bill to extend benefits for five months, retroactive until the date in December when federal benefits ended.
NETWORK is grateful for their work on this to Senators Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Dean Heller (R-Nev.) and the cosponsors: Republicans Susan Collins of Maine, Rob Portman of Ohio, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Mark Kirk of Illinois, and Democrats Jeff Merkley of Oregon, Cory Booker of New Jersey, Sherrod Brown of Ohio, and Dick Durbin of Illinois.
We hope that the bill will pass the Senate and quickly be taken up in the House and passed without extending the pain of the affected families.
We would prefer a much longer extension of benefits. These workers have been struggling to maintain their homes and feed and care for their families. A few months of benefits will provide a respite, but they will face the same struggles in such a short time.