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Unemployment Benefits Expire, Thousands in Illinois Without Safety Net

By aaroncynic in News on Dec 2, 2010 2:00PM

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Congress let extending benefits for the unemployed slide by this week, failing to approve measures that would aid over 2 million jobless Americans. Soon enough, some 127,000 Illinoisians could feel an even harder pinch in an already grim economy.

Illinois Department of Employment Security spokesperson Greg Rivara told the State Journal Register “We’re still doing an analysis, but it’s fair to say thousands will exhaust their benefits each week, beginning this week.”

As Progress Illinois points out, it’s not just the unemployed who will be further dragged down by an obstinate legislature. Without benefits, economic growth slows, more people lose jobs and the economy spirals further downward. Almost 390,000 people statewide collect benefits, and even though unemployment fell slightly in Illinois in October, retail holiday hiring is unlikely to spur any kind of meaningful economic growth. Nationwide, retailers pink slipped 1 in 7 workers since the recession began and even if they do hire 26 percent more workers than last year as the Naperville Sun Reports, those jobs are still temporary.