(TRENTON) - Assembly approved legislation Assembly Democrats Tim Eustace, Bob Andrzejczak, Wayne DeAngelo and Shavonda Sumter sponsored to ensure veterans have the same access to unemployment benefits online as everyone else was advanced Monday by a Senate panel.
The bill was approved 76-0 by the Assembly in December and released Monday by the Senate Labor Committee.
Currently, claimants who served in the military, worked in government or worked outside of the state can only apply over the telephone or in person.
"Currently policy neglects to provide veterans and others the same conveniences in filing for UI benefits as other residents," said Eustace (D-Bergen/Passaic). "All claimants in New Jersey should have equal access to all unemployment benefits filing options, especially those who have fought for this country."
"Limiting access to unemployment benefits by placing restrictions on filing is bad policy," said Andrzejczak (D-Cape May/Atlantic/Cumberland). "Our military service members deserve all of the support we can provide them upon returning home. This includes cutting out the red tape that impedes veterans from filing for UI benefits in the convenience of their home just like everyone else."
The bill (A-3508) would expand current law to require the Department of Labor and Workforce Development to permit online application for unemployment insurance compensation for claimants who have currently been excluded from access online.
"Not one resident should be excluded from the opportunity to file for benefits online in a time when almost everything can be done online," said DeAngelo (D-Mercer/Middlesex). "It's offensive to the New Jersey's veterans who have served our country for them not to be given online access. This must be fixed."
"Online access is the most popular way of filing for unemployment benefits," said Sumter (D-Bergen/Passaic). "This legislation expands law and clears up the confusion. Every resident must be able to apply for benefits online regardless of who they have worked for in the past."
Originally posted by the NJ Assembly Democrats.