The expiration of federally funded extended unemployment insurance benefits at the end of this year will have a significant impact on thousands of North Carolinians just in the first month. Nearly 70,000  are estimated to lose this lifeline in January 2012 alone despite the deepest economic downturn since the Great Depression . As we have profiled each week, veterans , older workers  and many other North Carolinians will be affected by the expiration of unemployment insurance benefits.
In addition, so will the economic recovery. Recent research released by the Economic Policy Institute  suggests that the failure to extend emergency unemployment benefits will also impact jobs and industry output. Because unemployment insurance benefits boost spending in the economy, they sustain and even create jobs. Continuing these benefits into 2012 will create or save more than half a million jobs nationally. In North Carolina alone more than 18,000 jobs  would be saved or created through an extension into 2012.
The evidence is clear: unemployment insurance benefits represent a sound investment that will support families struggling with unemployment and protect the economy from further job loss.