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Rep. Troy issues statement regarding Ohio's expensive and dysfunctional unemployment system

January 13, 2022
Daniel P. Troy News

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COLUMBUS – State Rep. Daniel P. Troy (D-Willowick) issued the following statement regarding a report that the Ohio Department of Job & Family Services (ODJFS), the executive agency responsible for managing Ohio's unemployment system, agreed to pay out-of-state contractors $59 per hour for call center agents.

“Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the executive branch, and more specifically, ODJFS, has failed miserably at helping the many hardworking Ohioans who lost jobs through no fault of their own.

“I've heard from hundreds of constituents about their nightmare experiences applying for unemployment with ODJFS. They're waiting on the phone for hours, only to be hung up on; having to submit documentation numerous times, only for it to be lost; finally being approved, only for the payments never to come; actually getting paid, only to receive a notice that the money must be returned.

“Now, to make matters worse, we've learned that ODJFS used our tax dollars to pay wealthy, out-of-state contractors upwards of $59 per hour for call center agents and $250 per hour for call center managers. Under current state leadership, Ohio has one of the most expensive and least effective unemployment systems in the United States. This is completely unacceptable, and there must be a complete restructuring of our state's unemployment system to better support Ohioans.”

To date, ODJFS has paid out-of-state contractors more than $200 million for assistance in managing Ohio's unemployment system. Throughout the pandemic, House Democrats have consistently urged ODJFS to fix Ohio’s broken unemployment system so that it effectively meets the needs of Ohioans.