Tens Of Thousands Locally See Unemployment Expire

Tens Of Thousands Locally See Unemployment Expire

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PHILADELPHIA -

An expiration date is affecting more than a million Americans. They were just cut off from what many considered a lifeline. The lifeline is unemployment benefits.

Federal unemployment benefits have expired, leaving some in our area without any income.

FOX 29's Dave Kinchen got a first-hand look at the impact Saturday. There are tens of thousands of people right here in the Delaware Valley impacted by these cuts, and that means endless stories of heartbreak and despair.

For one woman in Philadelphia's Tacony section, it's a story of fear.

Tracey Mulvehill spends precious time with her granddaughter as she thinks about an uncertain future.

She said she's "scared. Scared to death."

She's trying to figure out how she can care for her family now that the unemployment benefits she depends on with this card have been cut off and there are nearly 87,000 PA residents in the same boat.

"I rely on my faith that get me through and hopefully get that job I need to provide for my family and be self sufficient," she said.

The bills are stacking up, and the future of her house may even be in jeopardy.

"I don't know how I'm going to pay my mortgage next month. And it's just scary. It's really scary."

Tracey says she's been on unemployment for about a year after losing a full-time office manager job and part-time evening work. And she says it's hard out there

"There's a job around the corner for lottery tickets. I said I could do that, you know, in the evenings, and she said I was too old."

"How did that feel?" Kinchen asked.

"So degrading," Tracey answered.

She even added a magnetic sign to her car that says she is seeking work as a house cleaner.

Tracey is one of 1.3 million Americans separated from a 37-week extension of jobless benefits after Congress went home for the holidays without a plan to preserve them. That makes it hard for Tracey to be festive when the letters in the mail are hardly considered presents.

"My bills are piling up," she said. "This is a month's worth."

Tracey spends her time looking for work and volunteering with the Philadelphia Unemployment Project, and she says they have organized a bus trip down to Washington in January to lobby Congress. Their goal is to push for those benefits to be restored, Kinchen reported.

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