Pritzker considering incentives to get people back to work

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CHICAGO, Ill. (WTVO) — Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker said he is considering offering incentives to convince unemployed residents to return to work.

“We’re looking at all the options,” the governor said Monday.

While Republican governors in other states opted out of a federal $300 a week unemployment benefit, Pritzker has said he will keep the benefit in place until it expires on September 6th.

The nation, as a whole, has seen a sluggish return to the workforce following the COVID-19 pandemic, as half of the unemployed have benefitted from making more on unemployment – with the addition of the federal benefit – than they would from returning to their jobs.

Arizona, Montana, New Hampshire and Oklahoma are paying return-to-work bonuses to encourage residents to work.

Arizona is offering a one time payment of $1,000 to workers who accept a part-time job and $2,000 to unemployed recipients who take a full-time job.

New Hampshire is paying between $500 and $1,000 for part and full time positions. Montana and Oklahoma are paying $1,200 to those who take full-time positions.

On July 1st, the State of Illinois will offer $1 co-pays on child care for low income residents, in the hopes that will spur parents to head back to the workplace.

“We’ve been working to expand that in order to help them get back to work,” Pritzker said. “Listen, people who are not working not right now want to go back to work. So, we just need to make it easier for them to do so.”

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