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November 21, 2011

Employment Security Closed Thanksgiving and Friday
Claimants Should Certify; Services Available on Internet; Banking Holiday Might Delay Payments

CHICAGO - Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) service centers will be closed on Thursday and Friday, Nov. 24 and 25, in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday. Regular office hours of 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday, will resume Monday, Nov. 28.

Although IDES offices will be closed, services will be available at www.ides.illinois.gov People still will be able to file for first-time unemployment benefits, certify for benefits which is necessary to receive payment, and switch that method of payment to direct deposit. Because Thursday is a federal banking holiday, the availability of some benefit payments might be delayed. The IDES does not determine federal banking holidays.

The Department encourages direct deposit. Direct deposit is a simple, smart and secure way to receive benefits. Debit cards also are available. There are no fees associated with a debit card at point-of-service counters across the country that accept MasterCard, such as grocery stores, drug stores and convenience stores. Customers can request cash back after qualifying purchases. Fees likely will be assessed when using out-of-network ATM machines.

Career planning, training and job placement assistance are available at Illinois workNet centers. The services encourage individuals to assess their current skills and identify the training or education needed to augment those skills so they are ready to re-enter the workforce and find meaningful work. The Department also administers tax credits and bonding programs that reward employers who hire specific workers, such as military Veterans and the formerly incarcerated. The Department hosts workshops to help employers better understand how  insurance claims are evaluated, what is required to successfully challenge a claim, and other services to help businesses evaluate current and future growth potential.

The IDES supports economic stability by administering unemployment benefits, collecting business contributions to fund those benefits, connecting employers with qualified job seekers, and providing economic information to assist career planning and economic development. It does so through nearly 60 offices across the state, including the Illinois workNet Centers.


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