Kentucky to restore its unemployment work-search requirement

Kentucky to restore its unemployment work-search requirement

HENDERSON, Ky. (WFIE) - Unemployed Kentuckians will soon be required to prove they are searching for work at least once a week in order to receive benefits. Governor Andy Beshear recently announced the changes, which will start Sunday.

A quick drive from the north end to the south side of Henderson showed several work-related signs scattered along the way. Businesses are looking for help, and some may even include a bonus.

Hoping to grab the attention of those driving by is a trio of signs standing along South Green Street. Along the strip, restaurants such as Pizza Hut and Grandy’s are also looking for reliable help.

”I’m a cook, also a cashier due to being short-staffed,” Grandy’s General Manager Misty O’Dell shared. “I’m a little bit of everything right now due to not having enough staff to work.”

Misty was in the kitchen on Monday afternoon because she says her cook did not show up. The company plans to hire at least half a dozen people in Henderson, including cooks and cashiers to cover various shifts.

It is also offering a $100 sign-on bonus after 30 days hoping to attract candidates.

”It’s very frustrating,” O’Dell explained. “Very tiring. Lots of hours I’ve worked. Having to cover my shift alone, plus someone else’s shift. It’s 70 or 80 hours a week.”

More people may apply because starting May 9, those receiving unemployment across Kentucky must provide proof they are searching for work, a rule previously waived by Governor Beshear at the beginning of the pandemic.

”That would be wonderful,” O’Dell expressed. “That way we can get some staff in here and hopefully not have to work understaffed.”

Our team found another hiring sign hanging outside of Gibbs. It’s home-based in Henderson. Headquartered in neighboring Union County, Ervin Cable has nearly 150 positions across several states listed online.

Plus, in Uniontown, River View coal has ten openings. Leaders there tell 14 News they are looking for experienced roof bolter operators.

Those openings are the tip of the iceberg. The Kentucky Chamber put out a list of places that are hiring. It is more than a hundred pages long.

You can view that list here.

Some groups are exempt from the job search requirement. Those include members of unions that find work for them, students in training programs, those laid off with a recall date within 12 weeks of their initial claim date, those taking a temporary leave of absence, and people who are part of a mass electronically filed claim.

Copyright 2021 WFIE. All rights reserved.