New work search requirements begin Sunday; what you need to know before they start

New work search requirements begin Sunday; what you need to know before they start
Published: May. 8, 2021 at 8:09 PM CDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - It seemed better times were ahead for bar and restaurant owners as COVID restrictions began lifted. As more guests are allowed in, there may not be enough employees to wait on them.

“Arguably, the period we’re going through right now, that’s the most challenging period I’m certainly familiar with since I’ve been in business,” said Bruce Wren, Director of Operations at LexLive.

Wren said they do weekly job fairs Tuesday through Thursday 2-6 p.m. to try and hire more people. But the employee shortage is affecting businesses across the state.

Wren said they did have some turnover since opening back in March, but are still doing fine, especially for a business of their size. They do still have openings they’re working to fill.

“I’m not surprised it’s continued to be an issue. I think even as conditions change, it will continue to be a challenge,” Wren said.

The newest change: work search requirements for people on unemployment insurance will be reinstated starting Sunday.

“We’ll have to see long term what the impact is. We’re staying focused on the day-to-day here,” Wren said when asked whether he thinks the new work search requirements could help businesses during the hiring shortages.

Anyone on UI will be required to search for work as they did before the pandemic. And report at least one job contact per week. This includes the job title, who you contacted and the name of the employer.

“The number one thing I’m hearing from employers right now is they’ve got jobs. They’re ready, they’re raising their pay. So folks, get vaccinated. A career is waiting for you out there. More opportunity than just about ever before. Now is the time,” said Governor Andy Beshear.

According to the state, if you’re on UI, you will have to seek full time work, even if you’re currently working part-time.

“You get that vaccine, you’re safe, kids are back in school, daycare is open again. Now is the time. With our economy taking off again, we want you to be a part of this,” said Governor Beshear.

The Governor’s Office said there are exceptions to the new work search requirements.

You don’t have to conduct that search if you’re in a trade union that finds work for you, you’re a student in a training program, you have a recall date within 12 weeks, or if you were part of a mass claim filed by your employer.

You can learn more about the new requirements on the state’s website by clicking here.

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