Sen. Wilcox calls on Pritzker to make unemployment for ‘gig’ workers a priority

McHenry, IL. – State Sen. Craig Wilcox is imploring Gov. J.B. Pritzker to act as quickly as possible to get unemployment benefits to self-employed ‘gig’ workers. 

“The Governor is asking for patience, but patience is starting to wear thin, as people across the state continue to struggle,” said Wilcox. “This is especially true for gig workers.” 

So-called ‘gig’ workers are those workers who are self-employed, independent contractors and freelancers. 

According to the ADP Research Institute, 18 percent of Illinois’ workforce is made up of gig workers. The recently-signed federal stimulus law, enabled these workers to be eligible for unemployment benefits, although state must modify their websites to review these claims. As of yet, no modification has been made to the Illinois Department of Employment Security’s (IDES) website. Therefore, no claims can be submitted.  

“Gig workers were told they may, may receive benefits next month, after two months of a stay-at-home, economy-killing directive from the Governor. Now, two months of rent and mortgage payments, two months of kids at home, two months of only leaving the house for essentials on top of two months of not working; this is unacceptable. They need action now.”

 States such as like Iowa and New York provide guidance for gig workers on their websites. Michigan began accepting claims online April 13. Unfortunately, Illinois lawmakers were told Illinois’ IDES website will not be able to accept claims until May 11.  

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