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After Repeated Calls for NJ Labor Commissioner Robert Asaro-Angelo to Resign the NJDOL Finally Begins to Act

NJ Unemployment Office 1

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Trenton NJ, after repeated  calls for NJ Labor Commissioner Robert Asaro-Angelo to resign .The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJDOL) has begun scheduling in-person appointments for workers who have had trouble with their unemployment claims, and on March 28 will begin seeing claimants with previously scheduled appointments at select One-Stop Career Center locations. No walk-ins will be served.

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NJDOL is scheduling the appointments with claimants after pre-screening claims and identifying workers most likely to be helped by an in-person appointment. For example, claimants with a pending hearing can be assisted only after their scheduled hearing date.

At the time their appointment is scheduled, claimants will be directed to the closest One-Stop that can address their needs. Claimants receiving in-person support may be referred to unemployment staff with specialized training in their particular issues. Claimants will leave the appointment with a resolution in hand, or concrete next steps to getting their claim resolved. After the appointment, they are urged to check their email, answer their phone and check their claim status in the following days.

The most efficient ways to resolve lingering unemployment claims issues continues to be online or by telephone. But, those who have been waiting the longest, and those who struggle with technology, may find comfort in a face-to-face exchange, so NJDOL is adding this feature. The department urges everyone with a scheduled appointment to keep that appointment, and those without appointments to call our call center for additional support. NJDOL is not taking requests for appointments at this time.

The call center takes calls seven days a week, has a call-back feature, and is currently serving claimants with average wait times of only 3 to 5 minutes. Many issues can be resolved immediately. Since the contract call center was opened in June 2020, it has fielded 3.5 million calls. NJDOL has delivered more than $37 billion in benefits since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020.

Twelve One-Stop Career Centers that offered limited unemployment assistance before the pandemic are reinstating the service. All of the One-Stops remain open by appointment to help residents move forward in their careers, whether in the field where they previously worked or in a new line of work. To that end, all One-Stops offer resume writing, job leads, interview coaching, and virtual training classes to sharpen skills. Pre-screening is required to ensure every resident gets the precise help they need.

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