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Holzapfel, McGuckin & Catalano: Addition of Staff to Unemployment Call Centers ‘Better Late Than Never’

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10th District Legislator Ask Why It Wasn’t Done Months Ago

Senator Jim Holzapfel and Assemblymen Greg McGuckin and John Catalano (all R-10) said an announcement by Governor Phil Murphy and the Department of Labor of the doubling of staff handling calls at unemployment centers should have been done last spring.

Sen. Jim Holzapfel, Asm. Greg McGuckin, and Asm. John Catalano said an announcement by Gov. Phil Murphy and the Department of Labor of the doubling of staff handling calls at unemployment centers should have been done last spring. (SenateNJ.com)

“The understaffing of call centers has been an absolute nightmare for out-of-work New Jerseyans who have been forced to spend hours daily for weeks and months trying to get through to an agent to collect their unemployment,” said Senator Holzapfel. “For months we have requested that the Department of Labor address the issues with their call centers, but those requests were ignored until now by the Governor and his administration. While his action is better late than never, why did it take so long for Governor Murphy to do the right thing?”

“This administration has failed our residents at almost every turn,” added Assemblyman McGuckin. “Small businesses have been forced to close and let go of employees because of the Governor’s overreach of executive power that shut down our economy for far too long. When New Jerseyans went to collect the unemployment benefits they rightfully deserve, the Department of Labor couldn’t handle the hundreds of thousands of requests which left residents waiting weeks or months for a response. It’s been one disaster after another for too long, even when obvious solutions like beefing up call center staff were recommended.”

“While increased staffing at our unemployment call centers is a partial solution, what we really need is for Governor Murphy to repeal his overbearing executive orders that put people out of work in the first place,” stated Assemblyman Catalano. “People are ready to go back to work with safety measures in place, and they deserve to be compensated quickly for the period when they were unemployed.”

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