As New York's unemployment figures continue to rise, Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Monday announced a series of initiatives to help spur job growth and protect many people who might see their unemployment benefits expire before they are working again.
In a statement, Bloomberg’s office said the initiatives are designed to create jobs, support the City’s workforce, small businesses and homeowners, and provide targeted relief to the City’s most vulnerable populations. “In all likelihood, the current economic downturn will not end quickly,” said Mayor Bloomberg.
The announcement came as some 50,000 New Yorkers who had been collecting unemployment checks for 11 months will stop receiving weekly payments this week, according to the State Labor Department.
“We can’t eliminate the burden many will feel and we can’t act as a substitute for failing or missing federal assistance in every case, but by creating real jobs and providing targeted assistance to small businesses, homeowners and vulnerable New Yorkers, we can provide meaningful help to those who need it most,” Bloomberg said.
The 18 initiatives include job creation, small business support, and homeowner support.
In the week that ended Dec. 26, 30,161 people filed new applications for unemployment benefits, an increase of more than 32 percent over the same week in 2007. The number of first-time claims has averaged more than 30,000 per week for the last few weeks.