Tallahassee residents react to changes in Florida unemployment benefits

Updated: May. 25, 2021 at 2:31 AM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - On Monday the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity announced the state will no longer be participating in the federal unemployment benefits that gives $300 a week to those who qualify.

After hearing about the Florida DEO’s decision to stop participating in the federal pandemic unemployment compensation program, Tallahassee residents say they are unsure how they feel about the decision.

“So I don’t really know how I feel about that. I mean it could be hurting a lot of families out there.”

Tallahassee residents were sounding off on the state’s latest move regarding unemployment Monday.

“You know there are the people who really still need it but there are a lot of people out there that are abusing the system and are setting up the interviews to get there $300 but not actually going to the interview,” said Tallahassee resident Teresa Robson,

According to the DEO there are more than 460,000 job postings online which suggests nearly half a million people have the opportunity to get back to work.

“Florida has always been a great place to find new jobs and new benefits both educational and vocational,” said Tallahassee resident Jack Schweizer. “There are plenty of jobs out there, it is not hard to find a job if you’re willing to sit down for an hour and look.”

But the Career Source Capital Region CEO says simply cutting off the benefits might not provide a true long-term solution.

“I think hopefully I can leave a message that this is a very complex issue. It isn’t as simple as saying we’re going to cut off benefits, it’s really all about what are the people going to decide to do different after the events from COVID,” explains Career Source Capital Region CEO Jim McShane.

But McShane does expect the move to create a change in the workforce.

“With the waivers coming off we’re expecting that we will get a lot of people who will be looking for a job and become very active in doing that,” shared McShane.

Others feel there shouldn’t be a rush for those still needing help to get back on their feet.

“So we’re in the awkward phase of getting out of the pandemic but we’re not quite there yet so why not give people a helping hand,” explained Tallahassee resident Jeff Bauer.

A lot of these job openings come from the hospitality industry and local restaurants told WCTV they hope this incentivizes those to apply for these open jobs.

The move to end these supplemental benefits will take place on June 26th.

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