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Unemployed Workers Protest Gov. Hogan's Decision To End Federal Benefits

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The Unemployed Workers Union is blasting Governor Larry Hogan’s recent decision planning to stop the additional 300 dollars in federal benefits, leaving tens of thousands of Marylanders with less cash in their pockets.

Video Transcript

MAX MCGEE: 600,000 new jobs around the country, but here in Maryland, many are still struggling after Governor Larry Hogan says he plans to stop additional benefits. Residents are speaking against this, and now State Comptroller Peter Franchot is too, at a rally with desperation chanting loud and clear.

- Keep the benefits going!

- Almost a year and a half into the pandemic, picket signs and frustration line the entrance of the Baltimore Convention Center.

- You had to.

- Yeah, we will. Yeah.

- This is getting to be too much.

- Hotel, event, and other workers in Baltimore have been laid off since March 2020. This is their plea for help.

ROXIE HERBEKIAN: We're here today to protest the decision of Governor Hogan to deny workers in Maryland their federal unemployment benefits.

- In an announcement from the state Tuesday--

- Starting July the 3rd, it will stop the extra $300 and will require people to prove they searched for jobs each week.

- Keep the benefits going!

- The state also says they'll end new applications for pandemic unemployment July 3.

PETER FRANCHOT: Imagine what the business community would be saying if I, all of a sudden, pulled back right now the forbearance that I've given all of the businesses in the state. They would be furious.

- In his address to the state, Hogan says in part, "While these federal programs provided important temporary relief, vaccines and jobs are now in good supply. After 12 consecutive months of job growth, we look forward to getting more Marylanders back to work."

- It's kind of a slap in the face. So I would be Hogan, would you please not cut the benefits? The people need to survive, and it helps us a lot.

- The Department of Labor shows the state's unemployment rate at 6.2% in April, slightly above the national rate. This decision also means the state will forgo $1.5 billion in additional federal stimulus.

MAX MCGEE: There is no update yet on an emergency special session to keep the payments flowing. If you're trying to file your weekly claim this week, check your BEACON portal. See if you an "Apply for Benefits" button.