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Congressman Tim Ryan Urges Governor Mike DeWine to Accelerate Expanded Eligibility for Unemployment Insurance in Ohio

April 16, 2020
Press Release

Youngstown, Ohio – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) today urged Ohio Governor Mike DeWine to expedite the implementation of the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program to expand eligibility for unemployment insurance in Ohio to those who would not normally qualify. The PUA was established in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

On April 5th, 2020, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued guidance to states on how to implement this new program, but it will not be operational in Ohio until mid-May. This program will expand unemployment insurance to self-employed individuals, independent contractors, “gig economy” employees, and individuals who were unable to start a new position/contract due to COVID-19. This ensures these individuals can access 39 weeks of benefits to weather the crisis.

“Thank you for your continued leadership during these unprecedented times. Your quick and bold actions have no doubt saved countless lives throughout the state of Ohio,” wrote Congressman Tim Ryan. “I am cognizant of the challenges you and your staff are facing to implement a whole new program—and the many logistics this requires, especially in addition to other programs you are administering. But on behalf of my constituents depending on this, I want to express the urgency of this matter and to urge you to work expeditiously to make this relief available to Ohioans.”

Ryan’s full letter to Gov. DeWine can be viewed here.