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Virginia focused on making sure people out of work know their place

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Unemployment is still more than double what it was pre-pandemic, but the fine folks at the Virginia Employment Commission are focused on … work requirements and fraud.

Another feather in Gov. Ralph Northam’s cap here.

“With increased vaccination access, first in the nation workplace safety regulations, and a robust demand for workers from businesses, Virginia will resume collecting and reviewing work search activity of customers in the near future,” VEC Commissioner Ellen Marie Hess said today, in announcing that the commission will soon begin notifying customers for the reinstatement of the weekly work search requirement.

That, and from a presser sent out by the VEC today, we learn that “(u)nemployment Insurance fraud is a national problem, and Virginia is not immune,” which, seriously?

The VEC was under heavy fire really from the outset of the pandemic economic slowdown that resulted quite predictably from the public health orders instituted by Northam in March 2020 for its utter inability to keep up with what turned into a tenfold increase in unemployment claims.

And it’s still backlogged.

But, sure, let’s put resources that we somehow didn’t have to process claims into making sure that the deadbeats are looking for jobs and not cheating the system.

Beginning in May, if you’re receiving benefits, you’ll need to actively apply for at least two jobs a week in order to receive benefits.

It’s laughable to assume that an outfit that was so hopelessly inefficient in processing benefits claims over the past 12 months would be able to enforce this requirement, but hey, this is government; it’ll find a way.

How about acceding to reality and waiting for things to have actually returned to normal before throwing the weight of the state at people who are struggling?

Story by Chris Graham

augusta free press
augusta free press