Labor Department asks Congress for help fixing unemployment insurance tech.

April 17, 2024
1 min read


The Labor Department is asking Congress for help to fix the unemployment insurance system after the pandemic exposed weaknesses. They are seeking adequate funding, reforms to include more workers, and better enforcement options.

Key Elements:

  • The Labor Department has a new transformation plan to address weaknesses in the unemployment insurance system.
  • Congress needs to adequately fund the program and make reforms to include more workers.
  • States struggled during the pandemic due to low funding and outdated IT systems.
  • The department is asking for better enforcement options and stability in state UI trust fund funding.

The Labor Department’s plan aims to address the Government Accountability Office’s recommendations and ensure the unemployment insurance system is prepared for the next crisis. The pandemic exposed weaknesses in the system, and the department is calling on Congress to provide the necessary funding and reforms to improve the program’s effectiveness. States faced challenges during the pandemic due to low levels of administrative funding and outdated IT systems, which resulted in difficulties in responding to the crisis.

Congress is being urged to fund the program adequately, provide comprehensive UI reform, and enhance enforcement options to safeguard the program’s integrity. The department’s plan outlines the need for reforms to ensure that essential segments of the workforce are covered by unemployment insurance and that benefits are sufficient to sustain individuals during a job search. With the end of funding from the American Rescue Plan Act approaching, the department is seeking congressional support to transform the UI system before the next crisis hits.

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