About a month ago, we quit mailing our 45-page Handbook for Unemployed Workers to everyone who applies for unemployment benefits.
This decision to break from long-standing tradition didn’t happen overnight. It’s very important that everyone has a fair chance to understand the sometimes-complicated requirements for receiving unemployment benefits. At the same time, the opportunity to save up to $325,000 a year in printing and mailing costs was very alluring.
We were further persuaded by the fact that more and more people are using the Internet to file for benefits. With more and more of our customers accessing the Internet for our services, the decision became even more logical. Those who don’t have Internet access through a home computer or mobile device may log on for free a local WorkSource employment center or at most public libraries.
Even with the explosion in online use, we know some people are not comfortable with computers. So we will continue to make printed copies of the handbook available at WorkSource centers. In addition, individuals may request mailed copies by calling our claims center phone line: 800-318-6022.
At a time when Employment Security’s budget continues to plummet, we are facing many difficult decisions to save money. Moving to online distribution of the Handbook for Unemployed Workers is one of the few ways we can save money without eliminating one of our most essential services.
Susan J. Gordon is a Public Information Officer for the Employment Security Department.