Technology investments paying off for those on unemployment
OLYMPIA – Unemployment claimants have spent about 15 million fewer minutes – or about 28 years – holding phones to their ears so far this year, thanks to Employment Security’s new “virtual hold” option.
Emergency unemployment benefits to be phased out
OLYMPIA – Federal emergency unemployment benefits begin phasing out at the end of this month, which will reduce the weeks of benefits available to unemployment-insurance claimants in Washington.
Hours extended for Washington's unemployment-claims call centers
OLYMPIA – Starting Nov. 1, Washington’s unemployment-claims phone line will be open one hour earlier each day to receive benefit applications or questions from unemployed workers.
Pennies saved on postage add up to millions
OLYMPIA – At a time when the Employment Security Department is sending mail to more people than ever before, the agency is spending millions less on postage. In fact, over the past three years, Employment Security has trimmed more than $7 million in mail costs by combining mailings and maximizing postage discounts.
Private sector adds jobs, jobless rate holds steady
OLYMPIA – Washington picked up an estimated 1,000 private-sector jobs in September, while the unemployment rate held steady at 9 percent. The August rate was revised from 8.9 percent to 9 percent.
Auditors finding more unpaid taxes in 2010
OLYMPIA – Employment Security auditors are identifying more unpaid unemployment taxes by placing added focus on industries that have been more likely to fail to report employees and wages.
Free Microsoft online courses available
OLYMPIA - Employment Security Commissioner Karen Lee announced today that more than 1,000 different online Microsoft computer courses are now available for free to Washington residents who want to improve their work skills.
Unemployment rate stays steady
OLYMPIA – Washington’s unemployment rate held steady at 8.9 percent, while the private sector picked up 900 jobs. Overall, payrolls were down 2,000 in August due to the elimination of an estimated 2,900 government jobs.