For Immediate Release
David Dyssegaard Kallick, Director, Immigration Research Initiative, 646-284-1240, [email protected]
Spanish Language Contact: Anthony Capote, Senior Policy Analyst, Immigration Research Initiative, [email protected].
Report Shows Success of Excluded Worker Fund in New York
Summaries released in English, Spanish, Chinese, Bengali, Arabic, and Korean
Over the past two years, in response to the pandemic recession, a number of states—among them California, Colorado, New Jersey, Oregon, New Mexico, and Massachusetts, as well as Washington D.C.— established emergency unemployment compensation funds for workers who are excluded from unemployment insurance, including undocumented immigrants. An in-depth study of the largest of these programs, New York’s Excluded Worker Fund, found it was a remarkable success at keeping families afloat through the recession and ready to re-engage the economy as jobs gradually returned. The 20-page report, “Finally, We Are Being Recognized,” was released by Immigration Research Initiative and Urban Institute in the spring. Today, Immigration Research Initiative and the Urban Institute are releasing accessible summaries of that report in six languages – English, Spanish, Chinese, Bengali, Arabic, and Korean.
“Immigrants and other excluded workers stepped up during the pandemic to demand recognition and dignified treatment as workers and as community members” said David Dyssegaard Kallick, director of Immigration Research Initiative and a co-author of the report.
Elaine Waxman, senior fellow at the Urban Institute and also a co-author of the report, said: “Immigrant New Yorkers shared powerful stories about how the fund helped them support their children in difficult times, pay back debt they took on to get through the recession, and invest in options for future work.”
The summary of “Finally, We Are Being Recognized” looks at the success of the Excluded Worker Fund at a time when advocates are urging New York and other states to create a longterm program to cover excluded workers in the future. This May, Colorado became the first state to create a forward-looking fund to ensure that emergency funding does not need to be recreated in a scramble during any future recessions.
“The Excluded Worker Fund broke a logjam and proved unemployment compensation can be effectively designed to reach undocumented and other excluded workers,” Kallick added. “Now what’s needed is to take the next step – as Colorado already has and as New York and other states are considering – to create state funds that prepare for the next recession.”
Related Information and Reports:
How New York’s Excluded Worker Fund is Structured and Implemented. A joint report of Immigration Research Institute and The Century Foundation.
How Many People in New York Benefited from the Excluded Worker Fund, Region by Region, a report of Immigration Research Initiative.
A news report about the Colorado Program ensuring unemployment relief to undocumented immigrants whose employers pay into the unemployment insurance fund. Ballotpedia article.