DEW to reinstate mandate that requires users to prove they’re looking for work

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Charles Perez

FILE – In this June 1, 2020 file photo, Charles Perez wears a protective face mask and gloves as he waits on tables at the Morada Bay Beach Cafe in Islamorada, in the Florida Keys, during the new coronavirus pandemic. Repealing statewide mask mandates and criticizing the Biden administration’s unemployment-based formula for distributing billions in federal aid has put Republican governors and their approach to handling the coronavirus pandemic back in the spotlight. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – Starting Sunday, the Department of Employment and Workforce will reinstate a mandate that will require those on unemployment to prove they’re actively looking for work.

This comes on the heels of the state’s unemployment numbers continuing to go down.

So now the Department of Employment and Workforce is reinstating a mandate, but that doesn’t​ mean you have to apply.

The way it works with unemployment is during each week, you’re going to certify your claims like you normally would.

“And then the next step that they need to do is go to the SWOS system, which is SC Works Online Services,” said spokesperson for the Department of Employment and Workforce, Heather Biance. “That portal which is free for them to create an account and they will need to create and implement two work searches within the SWOS portal.”

Keyword, work searches.

“The state regulation requires people to search for work, that does not mean that they have to apply for those jobs,” said Biance.

You can search for positions, listings in your geographical area, by industry, and more. But those searches are what will keep the benefits coming.

“So the state regulation states that you have to complete the certification and the job search each week to remain eligible for benefits,” Biance said. “So it is an eligibility requirement to continue to receive benefits.”

Mike Shuler is the Co-Owner and General Manager over at Smoke on the Water in downtown Greenville.

He said his establishment is hurting for employees.

“Now as everything’s ramping back up, to try to find staff has been very, very difficult,” said Shuler.

Shuler said the restaurant typically staffs about 28 servers. They currently have eight and just hired six, and are doing anything to get people to apply.

“We reached out to all of the high schools around here, to the guidance counselors, trying to find busboys, and food runners,” said Shuler.

They’re even offering $500-dollar bonuses to employees after 90 days.

“We raised our rate of pay to 15-dollars an hour for a line cook just to try to be more competitive in the market,” said Shuler.

Because without the staff, there is no restaurant to keep running.

“Just trying to encourage people to get back out and get to work,” Shuler said. “But it’s really hard when a lot of people are getting paid to stay home and it’s hard to compete. You can’t really blame them.”

If you’re an employer in need of workers, Biance also suggests you post your job listings to SC Works Online Services. That’s where south carolinians can find more than 75-thousand jobs currently available.

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