Senator Durbin visits Mt.Vernon
One-Stop Center, announces extension
in unemplyment insurance
Mt. Vernon, Illinois (November 13, 2009) — Senator Durbin visited the One-Stop Business and Employment Center in Mt. Vernon and announced that the U.S. Senate has passed a bill that will extend unemployment insurance another 14 weeks for 50,000 job seekers who were scheduled to lose their benefits at the end of this year.
“There are now more than six jobless workers for every job opening in our country, and the unemployment rate in Illinois has reached 10.2 percent,” said Durbin.”
“Today, we are battling the aftershocks of the deepest recession since the federal unemployment program was created,” he added. “Unemployment insurance provides desperate families a helping hand during that gut-wrenching period between the day that the breadwinner loses his or her job and the day that a new job is found. An unemployment insurance check certainly doesn’t replace all of the wages that most unemployed people have lost — far from it. But it at least helps keep their families from going hungry as they hunt for work.”
According to a press release issued by Durbin's office, the federal government has devoted substantial resources to supporting job retraining programs designed to help dislocated workers skills that would help them find gainful employment. Funding included in the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) for Job retraining counties has already been put to good use, Durbin said. Jefferson, Perry, Jackson, Franklin and Williamson counties received $556,298 for adult workforce investment programs and $1,089,128 for dislocated workforce programs.
Senator Durbin also met with several Man-Tra-Con customers who spoke of how thankful they were to be able to continue to receive unemployment benefits while attending training programs that would help them find new employment.
With assistance from Man-Tra-Con, Joann Willmore researched training opportunities at Rend Lake College and entered a two-year program to become a Medical Laboratory Technician… a position that Joann says is expecting a 15% growth in demand.
“I lost my job two days after my 51st birthday… which could be overwhelming… you have a 30-year job, and at 51 you lose your job,” Joann explained. “I think that having a plan in place has helped me tremendously. I met with my career specialist Krys [Fisher] and the Allied Health Department. They really directed me to what I needed to do, and my unemployment is allowing me to dedicate myself to that. Part of my program is Clinical Rotation where I have to be available to do my clinical time. So, my unemployment is helping me to be able to commit to that program and dedicate myself to go back to school, at an age that most people aren’t expecting to go back to school. I’m just extremely grateful I have the opportunity to do this,” she added.
For more information about Senator Durbin’s visit, contact Kathy Lively at 618-998-0970, or firstname.lastname@example.org.