Congressman Bill Foster

Representing the 11th District of Illinois

Foster Calls For Immediate House Vote On Extending Unemployment Insurance

Jan 9, 2014
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Bill Foster (IL-11) and 48 freshmen Members of Congress are calling for an immediate vote in the house to extend emergency unemployment insurance. On December 28th, 1.3 million people, including over 80,000 in Illinois, lost their unemployment benefits.

A copy of the letter sent to Speaker Boehner is available here.

Yesterday, Foster spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives on the need to extend unemployment insurance.  Video is available here.

“Unemployment insurance is not a hand out, it’s a hand up for workers who lost their job, through no fault of their own, and need a lifeline while they look for work,” said Foster. “In addition to leaving families without a safety net, failing to extend unemployment insurance is simply bad economic policy.  Congress needs to take immediate action to restore this important lifeline.”

Not only does unemployment insurance help those struggling to find employment, it helps our economic recovery by supporting consumer demand.  It’s estimated that failing to extend unemployment benefits would cost 240,000 jobs in 2014, including 13,345 jobs in Illinois.  Additionally, the Congressional Budget Office and JP Morgan estimate that failure to extend benefits would lower GDP by .2 to .4 percentage points.

Foster is a cosponsor of H.R. 3546, the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Extension Act of 2013.  The legislation would renew the federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation program for an additional year.