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Louisiana Lawmakers Propose $1,000 Return-To-Work Bonus

Unemployment claims are continuing to increase and Louisiana House Republicans are willing to reward those who go back to work.

Posted: May 15, 2021 5:44 PM

LAFAYETTE, LA (KADN)- Unemployment claims are continuing to increase and Louisiana lawmakers are willing to reward those who go back to work.

Louisiana House Republicans made a proposal to decrease the number of people that file for unemployment. The proposal includes a return-to-work bonus of $1,000 to those who commit to stop filing for unemployment for six months.

People who lost their jobs wait in line to file for unemployment following an outbreak of the coronavirus disease, at an Arkansas Workforce Center in Fayetteville, Ark., on April 6, 2020.Nick Oxford / Reuters file

“It's definitely a push in the right direction, you actually get paid to work like double pay, which is a great thing honestly,” Mathis Edgerson, manager of Take 5 Oil Change on Ambassador Caffery Parkway, said.

Edgerson believes if lawmakers pass this proposal, then people will go to work.

“With the pandemic and unemployment skyrocketing and getting so much just to stay at home. From safety and everything else. Why would anybody want to come out and work when you get paid so much to sit at home and do nothing,” Edgerson said.

Edgerson says he tries to provide a welcoming workspace so he can keep the employees that he does have. He encourages other businesses to do the same.

“You just got to show them that we're more than just coworkers, we’re more of a family, like if they get comfortable in that it doesn't matter the conditions are how much they get from sitting at home,” Edgerson said.

Demi Broussard, the hiring manager at Flex Force a job placement agency, said that she doesn’t believe that people aren’t going to work in fear of getting the coronavirus.

“I think we're past that stage. I think at this point is the unemployment rates that are holding them back from it because employers and businesses and companies aren't able to go up to those kinds of rates, they can go a little bit but they're not able to go to the rates that unemployment is currently at,” Broussard said.

She wants people that are capable of going back to know that they shouldn't rely on unemployment because the funds won’t last forever.

“Not being able to explain why you weren't looking for employment within that time frame is not going to help you find a job when those rates go back to normal,” Broussard said.

The proposal was added to Senate bill 610 and has not yet been approved.

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