CUYAHOGA COUNTY, Ohio — According to the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS), 788,000 Ohioans are still out of work as of May and many of them have been forced to live off unemployment.
Without an extension, the Federal Pandemic Unemployment (FPUA) benefits will end on July 25. Another Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program from the state is set to end December 26. A spokesperson with ODJFS says they are looking to lawmakers for updates on extensions.
“Folks are looking to us to help the file claims and that’s not us that’s the state of Ohio but you know we do try to provide guidance,” Ohio Means Jobs Cleveland-Cuyahoga County CEO, Frank Brickner.
Brickner says some people are already starting to worry about how they’re going to make ends meet one the deadline hits.
“We are seeing people coming in our door you know now as they are like uh oh there’s no job to come back to you and they need help,” he said.
Brickner says right now there’s a high demand to fill healthcare, information technology, and soon manufacturing positions. But with Ohio’s economy still lagging, he says there could possibly be a shortage of job openings.
“There are fewer employees hiring,” Brickner said. “It’s a down market right now. I hope it turns back quickly.”
In the meantime, Brickner’s team is pushing to help those who may soon be in need.
“It’s hard for people, as they’re getting used to income to all of a sudden, say 'oh I have to take a nice cut while I go to training or do you know look for a job,'” Brickner said. “Your unemployment they only last so long but you know getting some type of assistance also to allow you to spend six months, nine months, 12 months in occupational training. We can help you with that.”
Whether you’re looking for job training or need help searching for a new job, Brickner says whatever you do don’t wait until the last minute.
“We encourage individuals right now if they need assistance to find their next career call us now so they can start the process, whether they need training or if they just need us to help them find employment that matches their talents.”