Millions of Americans will be forced to look for work as enhanced unemployment benefits are due to come to an end in just over a month, with the final payable week for the extended program due to end on September 4th.
The nation has experienced a significant worker shortage throughout the COVID-19 pandemic as businesses rapidly try to reopen. With millions of workers sitting at home, many businesses have claimed that it’s impossible to hire many of their former employees back because they are claiming unemployment benefits.
As unemployment benefits come to an end, the worker shortage will likely get resolved as millions of people start searching for jobs. The benefits are not expected to be renewed, even though COVID-19 cases are starting to pick up again in some regions of the country.
The enhanced unemployment benefits provided several extensions to workers, including independent contractors and freelancers that would otherwise not be eligible for these types of benefits by establishing the PUA program. Billions of dollars have been paid through this program across the nation, despite several states threatening to shorten the unemployment benefits due to worker shortages.
There are no current indications that either political party has any desire to provide any further stimulus payments or extended unemployment benefits, especially as the primary focus remains on a bipartisan infrastructure bill. If COVID-19 cases continue to get worse due to the ‘delta variant’, then shutdowns and unemployment benefits may come back onto the agenda in the near future.