Petition to Adam Schiff, Nancy Pelosi, Mitch McConnell, Adam Schiff, Judy Chu, Kevin McCarthy
Unemployment Relief For Independent Workers With Mixed Income Types
Unemployment Relief For Independent Workers With Mixed Income Types Fix The UI / PUA Problem for Hybrid Income Earners Traditional Unemployment Insurance (UI) has long paid benefits to W2 employees who lose their jobs. In the wake of COVID-19, the federal CARES Act introduced Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and marketed this program to self-employed individuals, gig workers, etc. to pay similar benefits for lost income related to 1099 self-employment. People could receive UI or PUA, but not both. For someone earning 100% of income via W2, UI is the answer. For someone earning 100% of income via self-employment/1099, PUA is the answer. The problem lies with hybrid W2/1099 workers, or those who earn income as a combination of W2 employment and 1099 gig work / self-employment / contracts. The table here illustrates the benefit problem caused by the UI vs PUA gap. Here is how this affects each type of worker: W2 Only: An employee earns $80,000 annually from a W2 employer as their sole source of income. This employee is eligible for UI and will receive up to $450 in weekly UI benefits. 1099 Only: A gig worker or independent contractor earns $80,000 annually through a series of 1099 earnings. There is no W2 source of income. This self-employed person is eligible for PUA and will receive up to $450* in weekly PUA benefits. W2/1099 Hybrid: A person primarily derives income from self-employment, amounting to $75,000 per year. This person has a part-time seasonal W2 side job, earning wages of $5,000 annually. This person is only eligible for UI and will receive $52 in weekly UI benefits. This person cannot claim PUA due to the W2 job and UI benefits are calculated solely on the W2 wages. Each of these three individuals earns $80,000 annually yet Person 3 is unable to achieve parity in benefits due to poorly constructed laws, policies or procedures. Close the Gap! At the very least, allow Person 3 to opt out of UI and choose PUA! While we are all grateful for receiving what funds are being made available to us, we would like to process to be a just one for all citizens of the United States. Thank you for your consideration, support, signature, and sharing. *From the California EDD PUA webpage: Once we are able to complete further programming, we will be able to increase the benefit amount to a maximum of $450 per week if you earned more than $17,368 in 2019. Update 5/11/2020 Our initial petition text is still accurate and accessible, but we wanted to include the language currently in front of Speaker Pelosi and Leader McCarthy here as well: Dear Speaker Pelosi and Leader McCarthy: Thank you for your efforts to pass the CARES Act in March, legislation that provides a crucial foundation for our response to the coronavirus crisis and that is providing desperately needed relief to millions of Americans and small businesses. During consideration of the CARES Act, we wrote to you to request that emergency unemployment benefits be made available to freelancers, contractors, and other independent workers who have lost in-come as a result of the pandemic. We are very appreciative that the CARES Act included the new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program, extending benefits to independent workers who lack the resources of a large employer but do not fully qualify for regular unemployment. However, while PUA has begun providing support to many previously ineligible workers, as currently constructed many independent workers with multiple sources of income are excluded from fully qualifying for its expanded benefits. This includes workers with mixed employment types and multiple sources of income who have lost income but are not fully covered by either regular unemployment or PUA. In particular, due to the sporadic and unpredictable nature of work in film, television, theater, and music, many professionals in the entertainment industries earn a living through a combination of traditional (W-2) and independent (e.g. 1099) employment. As a result, even if they have lost a substantial source of income due to coronavirus-related disruption of their independent work, these workers are ineligible for PUA. Some of these workers may qualify for regular unemployment compensation if they have also lost their W-2 work, but this can significantly under-measure their true earnings. And those whose W-2 income has continued but only represents a small portion of their earnings—for example, a worker who receives residual income from a previous project—are left with greatly reduced income yet are ineligible for any unemployment assistance. As you consider additional legislation to respond to COVID-19, we urge you to consider language to ensure that independent workers with mixed sources of income are able to access the same relief to make up for lost work that the CARES Act provides to those with more traditional employment arrangements. Thank you for your consideration and your leadership through these difficult times.
Petition to Steve Sisolak, Kimberly Gaa, David Schmidt, Kara Jenkins, Shelley Hendren, Marilyn Delmont, Barbara Cegavske
Nevada DETR Needs to Pay Backlogged UI Claims Now
The pandemic hit Nevada, and everywhere, hard in March. Businesses were locked down and layoffs started by mid-March. Many people who filed their DETR UI claims (not PUA) were never paid due to issues that needed to be reviewed. For many, these issues still are unresolved and no payments have been made, although, the claims are valid. We have called, emailed, emailed, called, tweeted, and called more. But nobody answers or helps. When the CARES act was passed it offered security so we could survive the pandemic by not working and still keeping our livelihood so we could re-enter the workforce and continue our lives easily. The Leadership in Nevada has failed to address these issues, and there are thousands of people who are now wondering when the much-needed support of their government will come. And it seems it never will unless more people speak out again. It is time to tell Nevada we need them to stop wasting time and causing problems which should be fixed by legislation which was passed months ago. We all want to go back to normal life safely, but instead, we are racking up credit card debt, depleting retirement savings, emergency savings, and skipping payments. Enough is enough!
Petition to U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives, Mitch McConnell, Ron Wyden
Unemployment & economic support for live-entertainment workers
Live-Entertainment Workers, we urgently need your support! Whatever the next (and perhaps final) policy to effect our economic lives will come in the next few weeks, and likely before July 2, 2020 (edit: revised to start negotiations after the July 4th Senate two week recess). We live-entertainment workers need support in the next legislation (which will come, in part, from the Houses HEROES Act). Unlike other sectors of employment, we stand to be one of the final sectors to return to employment. We WANT to return to work!A return to work bonus (currently being discussed as $450/week by the Senate) will NOT help us. Until states deem it possible and safe for us to gather again, we will not have employment. The current boosted federal unemployment insurance is not dis-incentivizing us from working, it is keeping us afloat. If you factor in that MANY workers are also now separated from our employers and thus our health-care, we are now using that 'extra' money to pay for COBRA or health care. Until we can return to work, we need continued support in this next phase of legislation. We petition for the following: Extended regular (state) unemployment of a maximum of 99 weeks (as was had during the Great Recession). Continued $600/week federal boost until we return to work. COBRA subsidy to help continue health insurance (during a global pandemic). State funding for Covid-19 testing, tracing and treatment. The sooner the Covid is behind us, the sooner we can return to work!
Petition to Kate Brown
That Governor Kate Brown has the OED release the numbers of people still in adjudication.
At this time, many Oregon citizens are facing uncertain times, with Oregon peaking at a current 14.2% Unemployment rate. Many people are stuck in an unprocessed state or have their claims on hold due to a "limbo" to quote several OED UI employees. This limbo is adjudication; the state only has 90 personal to process these claims to determine the cause of separation from one's employer. The only answer that one can get is it "takes anywhere from 10-12 weeks" Many have waited far longer than this. Oregonians are desperate! And now that the state employees are now shedding light on what it is like on the inside. https://www.portlandmercury.com/blogtown/2020/06/25/28576547/we-were-told-to-lie-qanda-with-state-worker-processing-unemployment-claims https://www.oregonlive.com/business/2020/06/participants-offer-inside-look-at-employment-department-debacle.html It is time for the OED to stop giving the people of Oregon lip services and hiding behind the fact that their system is outdated. We're hungry, on the verge of losing everything, and see no hope in sight. Kate Brown, please have the system of adjudication streamlined as you did to the waiting week.
Petition to Robert Asaro-Angelo, Phil Murphy
Tell NJ Labor Commissioner to step it up, or step aside due to ABYSMAL COVID-19 response
We, the unemployed of New Jersey cannot wait any longer for the NJ Labor commissioner to get his act together. We are 120 days into this crisis, and we are still waiting for our money with little or no answers in the meantime. For the NJ Labor commissioner to sidestep or straight-up ignore questions as he is currently doing, which in turn is causing grief and anxiety for the people he was meant to serve, is COMPLETELY UNACCEPTABLE. If you agree that appointed officials that act in a contemptible manner towards their constituents during an international crisis should be held accountable, SIGN THE PETITION! Why we are calling for the resignation of the NJ Labor Commissioner, Robert Asaro-Angelo: 1. Claims that have been filed in response to COVID-19 have still not been paid. (As of 7/2/20). Imagine losing your job while the economy is retracting due to an international health crisis, and then not having any income for FOUR MONTHS and counting! We paid into this system, and we are legally entitled to our money. 2. Some claims have been partially paid, only to be cut off with no explanation. One day you’ll go to certify for your benefits after successfully receiving them the week before, but this time you’ll be told that your claim cannot be processed! They’ll tell you to call the unemployment office for more info (anyone who has tried to call the unemployment office knows what a huge joke that is). 3. The call center situation is an absolute disaster. This is not a knock at those who work the call centers. They are doing the best they can with what they're given to work with. This is a criticism that is directed straight at the NJ DoL leadership. If you call, you are most likely to hear a message stating that the lines are too busy, and that you'll have to call back another time. If you do get a hold of someone, you'll be told that you will have to wait 7-10 business days for a claims examiner to MAYBE fix your problem. THE PEOPLE OF NEW JERSEY LITERALLY CANNOT AFFORD TO WAIT WEEKS ON END WHILE THESE CONDITIONS EXIST! ROBERT ASARO-ANGELO, EITHER FIX IT, OR FIND ANOTHER JOB.