Friday, April 16, 2010

My letter of appeal

New Jersey unemployment denied my claim stating that my move to NOLA was a personal reason for quiting my job. This is my response:

04/13/10
To: New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development
Re: Appeal Tribunal

From: Eric T Styles
New Orleans, La. 70115

This is reference to the disqualification of unemployment benefits. The reason given by your agency is that I left my former employer to move to Louisiana for personal reasons and that did not make me eligible for unemployment benefits. I have paid into NJUI for over 26 years and never once filed a claim.

My choice to relocate to New Orleans was not for the mild climate. It was an economic decision. When I left my former employer my take home pay after child support garnishments was under one hundred dollars a week. Tips and gratuities averaged approximately fifty to sixty dollars a week. A total of one hundred fifty dollars was my average take home pay for a sixty hour work week. Mathematically it was impossible to survive on my income given the cost of living.

Due to the poor economic climate in New Jersey, finding other employment was difficult. New Jersey is the fourth most expensive state in the country to live. The least expensive housing I could find was $175 a week. Here in New Orleans I can find comparable housing for $75 a week. The economy in Louisiana is experiencing the second strongest recovery in the nation at this time. I am living here out of necessity; my move was one of economic flight.

My choice was NOT a personal life style change, but one of economic survival. If any member of NJUI can inform me of how I could survive on $150 a week income in New Jersey, I’ll return.

Eric T Styles
Bingecomic@hotmail.com

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