Missouri AFL-CIO Dislocated Worker Program provides assistance, resources for workers laid-off due to COVID-19

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The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact working families, with many laid-off or working reduced hours in a health and economic crisis that is expected to last into next year.

The Missouri AFL-CIO’s Dislocated Worker program partners with the state of Missouri to help connect dislocated workers across the state to the resources and assistance they need to re-enter the job market quickly following a layoff.

For union members who have been laid-off or furloughed, the following list of resources are available to help you find your next job or training opportunity.

Missouri Job Centers and Career One Stop

Missouri Job Centers offer free services including occupational skills training, unemployment benefits information, re-employment job assistance, resume drafting, interviewing training, and a host of other resources to dislocated workers. To find a job center near you visit, careeronestop.org, jobs.mo.gov, or call 1-888-728-JOBS (5627) and it will ring at your nearest job center. When you call, tell them you are a dislocated worker, a worker who has lost your job through no fault of your own. As a dislocated worker, you can explore new career options and training programs.

#ReturnStrong

As part of the Missouri Department of Higher Education and Workforce Development’s #ReturnStrong initiative, job seekers can use the MoJobs platform to access information about training opportunities, resume assistance, job searches, and other employment-related services. For more information, please visit jobs.mo.gov/return-strong.

On the site, you will find information about virtual job fairs and FREE online training opportunities through Coursera (visit jobs.mo.gov/coursera), a leading educational platform that provides more than 3,800 courses taught by instructors from over 200 leading universities and companies. Missourians who complete additional training through Coursera will earn a certificate or industry-recognized credential. To access Coursera for free, you will need to complete your registration before Sept. 30, 2020.

Employment Opportunities

In addition to the job search and career exploration assistance available to you through the state’s network of American Job Centers, Missouri One Start, a service provided through the Missouri Department of Economic Development, is a great job-search resource.

For more information about immediate employment opportunities, please visit Missouri One Start at missourionestart.com/now-hiring. The platform lists companies with current job openings with links to apply.

Short-Term Training Opportunities

Many institutions of higher education across the state offer short-term training opportunities. Be sure to have the training program approved through a local job center to receive reimbursement from the state of Missouri. Upon completion, you will receive a certificate or industry-recognized credential.

To find an institution and program near you, please visit jobs.mo.gov/content/return-strong-resources-job-seekers.

FREE Virtual Job Fairs

Connect with more than 170 Missouri employers at an upcoming FREE Virtual Job Fair hosted by the Missouri Office of Workforce Development:

  • Wednesday, July 22, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 5, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.

For details about event registration, visit jobs.mo.gov/seeker-virtual-job-fair-registration.

Health Insurance and Retirement

Employee benefits are a significant area of concern when faced with changing jobs or job loss. It is important that workers understand their rights for continuing or accessing their benefits following a change in employment.

The Employment Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) oversees retirement as well as health and welfare benefits, including COBRA and special enrollment rights and is here to assist dislocated workers navigate the process of protecting employee benefits. EBSA Benefits Advisors across the country are available during business hours Monday-Friday to handle direct inquiries from dislocated workers or their families.

To request assistance from an EBSA Benefits Advisor, visit askebsa.dol.gov or to speak directly with an EBSA Benefits Advisor, please call 1-866-444-3272.

Note: Other helpful information is available by visiting dol.gov/agencies/ebsa/workers-and-families/changing-jobs-and-job-loss.

Unemployment Insurance

To file for unemployment online, visit uinteract.labor.mo.gov. If you prefer to speak to someone on the phone regarding unemployment, you may call for assistance. Regional Claims Center representatives are available by phone Monday - Friday from 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM or by email at esuiclaims@labor.mo.gov.

  • St. Louis – 314-340-4950.
  • Kansas City – 816-889-3101.
  • Outside Local Calling Area – 800-320-2519.

For regular unemployment updates, including up-to-date information as to changes adopted at the federal level and implemented in Missouri, visit labor.mo.gov/coronavirus.

Important note, per the Missouri Department of Labor: Beginning with the week of July 5, 2020, individuals wishing to continue to receive unemployment benefits will be required to perform work search activities. The work search requirement had previously been lifted for those filing a coronavirus-related unemployment claim. In addition, the federal CARES Act legislation that authorized an additional $600 unemployment benefit payment per week will only continue through the week ending July 25, 2020.

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