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Paul Ryan supports plan to let unemployed work for free

By David Edwards
Sunday, September 18, 2011 14:24 EDT
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Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) isn’t a fan of President Barack Obama’s American Jobs Act, but he does like the idea of allowing people who are receiving unemployment benefits to work for free.

The plan is based on a program called Georgia Works which matches job seekers with employers. Under the plan, employers agree to provide up to eight weeks of on-the-job training. Workers, who can only work for 24 hours a week, continue to receive unemployment benefits instead of getting paid.

“The Georgia plan sounds pretty interesting,” Ryan told Fox News’ Chris Wallace Sunday. “I think that’s something we are looking at, which is unemployment reform.”

Ryan’s remarks echo House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s (R-VA) support of the idea.

“We stand ready to work with [President Obama] if there is interest in implementing a similar program on the federal level,” Cantor said.

According to data the Georgia Department of Labor provided to The Huffington Post’s Arthur Delaney, the program isn’t very successful.

Between 2003 and 2010, only 16.4 percent of people that participated in the program found work, about the same rate as those who were not participating. As of late August, there were only 19 trainees enrolled in Georgia Works.

The top weekly unemployment benefit in Georgia is about $330.

Watch this video from Fox’s Fox News Sunday, broadcast Sept. 18, 2011.


Watch this video on iPhone/iPad

David Edwards
David Edwards
David Edwards has served as an editor at Raw Story since 2006. His work can also be found at Crooks & Liars, and he's also been published at The BRAD BLOG. He came to Raw Story after working as a network manager for the state of North Carolina and as as engineer developing enterprise resource planning software. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidEdwards.
 
 
 
 
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