Unemployment insurance: For employees only?
The unemployment system is meant to help people when work is scarce (and to help the economy by allowing consumers to maintain spending). But the program usually shuts out independent workers, despite the fact that freelancers, part-timers, and contract workers are often among the first to feel the pinch when the economy slumps. Almost 80% of the independent workers who took our 2006 survey reported that they would buy into an unemployment insurance program if they could. We think you deserve to be included in unemployment insurance, either by buying into the existing program, or by funding a tax-free personal account. (The Brookings Institution recently outlined a plan for what that might look like.) For our analysis of the challenges of the current unemployment program, see our issue brief. But we'd like to know how have the limitations of the unemployment system have affected you personally. You can share your comments below.