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WNY Area Labor Federation ‘Applauds’ State Senator Kennedy For His Role In The Passage Of Legislation To Extend Unemployment Benefits To Striking Workers

Published Tuesday, May 7, 2019
by Labor News Services & WNYLaborToday.com Staff
WNY Area Labor Federation ‘Applauds’ State Senator Kennedy For His Role In The Passage Of Legislation To Extend Unemployment Benefits To Striking Workers

(ALBANY, NEW YORK) – New York State Legislation sponsored by Senator Tim Kennedy (Democrat-Buffalo) to protect striking Workers from unfair negotiating tactics has passed the New York State Senate, which is drawing the praise of the Western New York AFL-CIO Area Labor Federation (WNYALF).

Senate Bill S4573 relates to decreasing the length of the suspension period applicable to certain Striking Workers who seek to obtain Unemployment Insurance Benefits.  It also decreases the length of the suspension period applicable to certain individuals who lose their jobs due to a Labor Dispute, such as a Strike, and who seek to obtain Unemployment Insurance Benefits.  It also decreases the suspension period from seven consecutive weeks to seven consecutive calendar days and permits the waiting period to be served during a suspension period. 

Current law mandates Workers who are unemployed due to a Strike must wait seven weeks before collecting Unemployment Benefits.  In all other cases, individuals only have to wait one week before they are able to collect benefits.  This gives employers unfair leverage over Workers at the negotiating table.

“I want to ‘thank’ Senator Kennedy ‘for his hard work on this critically important issue and for being an advocate for’ Working Men and Women ‘across this State,’” WNYALF President Richard Lipsitz said of Senate Bill S4573. “We ‘look forward to seeing this legislation become law this year.’”

This legislation must pass the Assembly and be signed by Governor Andrew before becoming law.

“The current law ‘singles out’ Striking Workers and Members of Organized Labor, ‘forcing them to wait nearly two months before they can claim Unemployment Benefits.’  This ‘antiquated and unfair policy is unacceptable in New York State,’” Senator Kennedy said.

“Attempting to get the hard-working men and women of Organized Labor ‘to agree to an unacceptable contract by financially starving their families is wrong and it must be stopped.’  My legislation ‘levels the playing field so negotiating a fair contract is just that, fair,’” Kennedy said.

To Directly Access Senator Kennedy’s Bill, Go To: www.nysenate.gov/legislation/bills/2019/s4573  & To Watch A Video Of Senator Kennedy Speaking On The Senate Floor In Support Of The Bill, Click Here:  www.dropbox.com/s/fbmw9rayjl0keu7/Kennedy-SS-050119-S4573.mp4?dl=0

 

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