With the expiration of federal unemployment benefits on Dec. 28, just one out of five unemployed Ohioans is receiving benefits, according to a study released today by Policy Matters Ohio. That share is as low as it has been any year over the past 30 years.
Since June 2008, the federal government had provided additional unemployment compensation after the end of regular state benefits, which in Ohio and most states last 26 weeks. In Ohio, long-term unemployed could receive up to 37 weeks in U.S.-paid benefits.
"Congress should act now to restore federal benefits, which have not previously been withdrawn when the national unemployment rate was this high," said Zach Schiller, study author and Policy Matters research director. "This will not only aid the families of unemployed Ohioans, but the economy as well."
Until the program ended, more than 36,000 Ohioans had been receiving the additional federal benefits. Another 1,800 whose state benefits expire would become eligible for the program each week.