Senators Push Gov to Act on Delayed Unemployment for Military Vets

Senators: “It is unacceptable that men and women who served our country cannot even get a response back from their government during their time of need”

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Raleigh, N.C. — Twenty-one North Carolina senators today pushed Governor Roy Cooper to reassign staff from the N.C. Department of Military and Veterans Affairs to address long-delayed unemployment insurance claims from military veterans and their families.

In their letter to the Governor, the senators wrote, “It is unacceptable that men and women who served our country cannot even get a response back from their government during their time of need.”

On May 18, the Senate Commerce Committee heard testimony from North Carolinians who have been waiting for weeks or even months to receive unemployment assistance from the Cooper Administration. One speaker, a military spouse, broke down in tears during the public hearing.

In the days preceding the hearing, 1,435 comments from the public were submitted, almost all of them stories of disappointment from those who need but haven’t received unemployment assistance to pay rent or buy groceries.

Read the full letter from the senators . The text is copied below.

Dear Governor Cooper,

We write to ask that you temporarily reassign staff from the N.C. Department of Military and Veterans Affairs to the N.C. Department of Commerce to process unemployment claims from military veterans and their families.

Over the course of 96 hours, 1,435 public comments were filed regarding your administration’s handling of unemployment claims, including some from military veterans who have been unable to speak with anybody at your unemployment insurance office.

A military spouse broke down crying at this week’s Senate Commerce Committee hearing, saying through tears, “We’re a family of six, and unemployment has yet to acknowledge us.” Another military spouse, who is an out-of-work restaurant employee, submitted a public comment, writing, “My husband is military, but we still rely on my pay to help as well. I’m going on week 8 with no movement.”

It is unacceptable that men and women who served our country cannot even get a response back from their government during their time of need. We request that you immediately assign staff from your Department of Military and Veterans Affairs to handle veteran-related unemployment claims.

Thank you for your consideration.

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