MADISON — The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development will continue to waive work searches for people who apply for Unemployment Insurance benefits, as thousands who were laid off under the weight of the pandemic struggle to even find open positions.
State of Wisconsin law requires residents applying for unemployment benefits to look for a suitable job and provide information about four work search actions they have taken each week. But the emergency order approved by the DWD Thursday allows the department to waive that requirement, as many people are struggling to even find open positions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
For the week ending on Jan. 2, 2021, DWD says it received 25,005 weekly claims for federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, 31,936 weekly claims for federal Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation and 117,123 claims for regular state unemployment insurance.
Without a waiver, those claimants would have been required to provide information about four work searches per week.
The emergency order also continues to ease eligibility for people who would work, but cannot for COVID-related reasons, such as being quarantined or subject to subsequent stay-at-home orders, the DWD explained in a statement.
The new rule expires July 10, 2021. You can find the full order here.