It’s been over a year since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Gov. Mills declared an “emergency” over a year ago. It’s been an extremely difficult year. Many adverse impacts became apparent. Many executive orders were issued, forcing businesses and organizations to close, forcing Mainers to remain home. It’s caused adverse harmful impacts upon the economy and Maine’s people. The Maine Legislature failed to do its job satisfactorily dealing with this situation, including but not limited to the Department of Labor’s issues and many missteps.

Additionally, the Maine unemployment insurance “system” is woefully flawed and imperfect, with many deficiencies and problems. It hasn’t served Maine’s people properly or efficiently. It is user unfriendly, too. Further, many people haven’t received their weekly claims in a timely manner, putting extra burdens and hardships on them, all on Commissioner Laura Fortman’s watch.

The recent editorial (“Our View: It’s well past time for unemployment system to do its job,” March 26) got it right. The unemployment insurance “system” is woefully broken, out-of-date, etc. It must be dealt with substantively, to curtail further hardships and other issues for all Mainers. Failure to address, correct and rebuild a better unemployment “system” ‘is not an option. The Maine Legislature must find the means to adequately and properly address and fix the woefully flawed “system.”

It’s very clear and evident that there are enough “system failures” with shortcomings. When is enough going to be enough? Additionally, semi-closed CareerCenters aren’t helping out enough Mainers seeking new work. It’s imperative that all CareerCenters be reopened more for job seekers. Please make it so.

David Hall

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