By Laura Cassels
July 31, 2020
Workers in Miami protested Friday against losing federal Unemployment Insurance benefits of $600 weekly that jobless people were receiving in the pandemic economy due to massive job losses.
The four-month-old supplement ended Friday, with partisan fighting in Congress failing to create a replacement.
That leaves jobless workers in Florida reliant on a $275 weekly state benefit that includes only 12 weeks of unemployment pay — the lowest total benefit in the nation, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. (The base number of weeks does not reflect the 13-week extension authorized by Congress for COVID-19 relief.)
“We are feeling the pain of the pandemic through no fault of our own. There are no jobs for people to find,” said Jeffrey Mitchell, president of the South Florida AFL-CIO and of Transit Workers Union Local 291, who was interviewed by the Phoenix.
“Nobody is sitting at