Ensuring Economic Security & Opportunity in Our Lifetime: America’s Pandemic Relief Response & the Path Forward
In 2020, federal policymakers took extraordinary measures to help millions of families avoid poverty and material hardship during the COVID-19 crisis. These temporary federal relief efforts—especially those boosting household incomes and ensuring people’s access to essential services—“played a central role in stabilizing our families and our nation’s economy, while pushing back on deep racial and gender inequity,” according to GCPI Co-Executive Director Indi Dutta-Gupta’s testimony before the United States House of Representatives Select Subcommittee Committee on the Coronavirus Crisis. Dutta-Gupta also argued that continuing to provide needed support to families would address pre-existing inequities and the weaknesses of social protection programs. Policies in “Build Back Better” proposals—with some crucial additions—would provide transformational investments to protect families and our economy against future threats, meet our national caregiving and job needs, and reduce poverty, hardship, and inequality for generations to come.
No Choice: The Implications of Unmet Child Care Needs For Unemployment Assistance & Paid Leave Access During The COVID-19 Pandemic
The COVID-19 crisis has exposed the clear need for child care, paid leave, and unemployment assistance, but many state and federal unemployment assistance and paid leave programs fail to account for the child care needs of working families. For many parents of dependent children, widespread closure of child care and in-person school made searching for work and securing and retaining formal employment nearly impossible. This brief describes how unmet child care needs intersect with and can be mitigated by state and federal unemployment assistance and paid leave programs, and provides policy recommendations to address the care crisis in the short-run and beyond. An accompanying workbook chronicles and analyzes state-by-state policies on the availability of wage replacements for workers without child care.
GCPI, the National Employment Law Project, and the Century Foundation created a flowchart to clarify which pandemic-response or regular unemployment assistance benefits may be available to workers from late March 2020 through late December 2020 and under which circumstances.
COVID-19 response legislation greatly strengthened and expanded the dollar amount, duration, and coverage of unemployment assistance. These changes have prompted questions about the implications for workers receiving disability benefits. This brief discusses and clarifies the interactions between disability benefits and unemployment assistance. It is published jointly with Poverty Solutions at the University of Michigan, The Arc, Association of University Centers on Disabilities, The Century Foundation, and The National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities.
Sheila Naughton, Kali Grant Michael Evangelist, & Patrick Cooney
As unemployment soars, a substantial share of unemployed jobseekers—including new entrants, such as many students completing school—are excluded from the regular Unemployment Insurance (UI) system and new emergency unemployment programs. This brief argues that a Jobseeker’s Allowance could fill gaps in the UI system and help workers, families, and the economy by providing cash and employment supports for jobseekers left out of UI. The brief is jointly published with Employ America, the Economic Policy Institute, the National Women’s Law Center, the National Employment Law Project, and the Century Foundation.
Automatic stabilizers—policies that make public spending responsive to economic conditions—boost our economy by reducing income losses and supporting consumer spending. This memo, published jointly with Data for Progress and the Groundwork Collaborative, analyzes new polling data on automatic stabilizers. By a two-to-one margin, voters support Congress implementing policies to automatically increase social spending during periods of increased unemployment.
Considerations for Child Care Providers & Workers Navigating Financial Support Options During the COVID-19 Crisis
Child care providers have been hit hard by the COVID-19 crisis and are facing tough decisions about how to do what’s best for the families they serve, their own families, their workers, and their businesses. This fact sheet, published jointly with the National Women’s Law Center, outlines financial supports available to help cover providers’ business expenses and to help workers who face layoffs or reduced hours.
The novel coronavirus has brought sudden attention to the important role unemployment insurance (UI) system plays in quickly delivering aid to families and stimulus to the economy. This fact sheet, published jointly with The Century Foundation, the Economic Policy Institute, National Employment Law Project, and the National Women’s Law Center, emphasizes the importance of focusing both on immediate changes to help individuals and sustained, structural fixes to fully respond to a crisis of this magnitude and gird the nation for the challenges of a recession and future economic crises.
Unemployment insurance provides temporary support to unemployed workers who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own. This fact sheet, published jointly with the National Women’s Law Center, National Employment Law Project, and Center for American Progress, shows the importance of unemployment insurance for women and families and suggests changes that would improve the program’s effectiveness for women, their families, and the economy as a whole.
In partnership with the Center for American Progress (CAP) and National Employment Law Project (NELP), the center released a report on modernizing unemployment insurance for a 21st century economy and establishing a new Jobseeker’s Allowance.
Strengthening Unemployment Protections in America: Intro & Summary
This summary introduces readers to the 2016 CAP, GCPI, and NELP report, “Strengthening Unemployment Protections in America,” on modernizing unemployment insurance for a 21st century economy and establishing a new Jobseeker’s Allowance.
This document succinctly summarizes recommendations laid out in the 2016 CAP, GCPI, and NELP report, “Strengthening Unemployment Protections in America.”
Strengthening Unemployment Protections in America: A Discussion
Representative Sandy Levin (D-MI) and White House Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Jason Furman explain the need for unemployment insurance (UI) reform. Executive Director Indivar Dutta-Gupta served on a panel of experts to debate UI and the Job Seeker’s Allowance.
Updated, independent analysis from the Urban Institute commissioned by the center, CAP, and NELP—which shows that just three of the center’s proposed reforms would significantly increase the share of newly unemployed workers who are protected by UI.
The Center for American Progress (CAP), the National Employment Law Project (NELP), and the Georgetown Center on Poverty and Inequality identify the main challenges facing states’ unemployment insurance (UI) programs; provide recent state-level data; and recommend steps that states can take to substantially strengthen their UI programs.
Strengthening Unemployment Protections in America: The Case for a Stronger Federal Role and Opportunities for State Action
On the heels of CAP, NELP, and the center’s joint proposal to modernize America’s UI program and introduce the JSA, this webinar is designed to provide state policy advocates and state workforce agency administrators with information about what states can do on their own to strengthen unemployment protections for their populations.