The numbers are staggering: 3.6 million jobs lost between December 2007 and January 2009. The February unemployment figures, due out this week, will continue to be grim. When workers face job loss, they often don’t know where to turn for answers. They may be improperly denied their last paycheck, money due when their plant closes, or told by their employer that they cannot collect unemployment benefits.
Interfaith Worker Justice (IWJ) has created a website which enables workers to understand their rights and protections and advocate for themselves. It offers state-specific information geared to help real life situations:
* A teacher is trying to find out if her student can collect unemployment after quitting because she was groped by her boss.
* An upscale grocery store closes, with no notice. Workers are told to take their final pay in food and wine.
* A worker doesn’t file for unemployment after his boss tells him that he isn’t eligible because he’s a part-time worker. He regularly worked 35 hours a week and was eligible.