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Michigan Unemployment: Services for Unemployed Workers

Michigan Unemployment: Services for Unemployed Workers

Unemployment benefits are only one of the many resources available to Michigan workers who lose their employment due to no fault of their own. Additional benefits provide workers and their families with much needed healthcare, financial, mortgage and social assistance. This series of articles will provide valuable information on the services available to workers in the state of Michigan.

General Assistance

As you no doubt understand, or you wouldn’t be reading this, information is vital if you are to make the most of the benefits available. Michigan has four main programs offering information to unemployed workers: the UIA, the Helping Hand Website, the 2-1-1/United Way and the Department of Human Services.

Michigan’s Unemployment Insurance Agency provides information on unemployment programs at its official website: www.michigan.gov/uia.. This includes webcasts such as “Resources for Displaced Workers”. This particular webcast offers information on resources unemployed workers may qualify for once their unemployment benefits have expired.

The Helping Hand website is subsidized by the state of Michigan and provides assistance to Michigan citizens who are facing financial difficulties. Although the website does not provide programs of its own, it does include links to training, financial assistance and housing programs available in Michigan.

The 2-1-1/United Way is a resource service for people suffering economic hardship. You can access these resources by calling 2-1-1. The program offers confidential assistance for workers who wish to apply for employment, training programs, housing, food pantries, rent and utility assistance. Because this program is telephone based it is accessible to 81 percent of the citizens in Michigan.

The Department of Human Services provides both information and programs of its own. These programs include cash assistance, medical services, food assistance, emergency services for people in need of heat and utilities, home repairs and relocation assistance. For food assistance you can call the Food Stamp Hotline 1-800-481-4989 or visit your local Department of Human Services county office.

Note these programs are often complementary. If you and your family are going through financial difficulties, contact all of these institutions and request what help is available. There are other institutions, such as churches and privately run food pantries that may provide access to resources, but these are run on the local level and vary from town to town.

However, as important as information is, direct access to unemployment assistance is even more vital. Our next article will focus on agencies and Michigan state departments that offer direct access to unemployment and financial assistance programs.

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