Update 5/18/21: The NJ DOL approved the Rutgers/URA-AFT shared work program application. This means that applications for unemployment insurance benefits for furloughs beginning the week of 5/16/21 will be paid (assuming your individual claim is approved) as planned.
Update 5/15/21: Last Monday, we shared with members management’s list of those eligible to furlough. Thank you to everyone for assisting in verifying that list. We had a tremendous response. Working as a union, we compiled a list of corrections for the final roster. There may still be mistakes, but we are working and meeting with UHR and the New Jersey Department of Labor (NJ DOL) to correct them as soon as possible.
On Friday, the plan was sent to NJ DOL for approval. We have not received approval at this time. On late Friday afternoon, Sr. VP Vivian Fernandez sent her email providing instructions on filing for unemployment.
If you are eligible for furlough, you will receive a separate email from your department with an Official Notification from your department with the agreed furlough day of the week through the duration of the program.
If you are ineligible for the furlough program, you already should have received an email telling you are exempted.
If you have a furlough day scheduled, take it as planned. Until the NJ DOL approves the plan, when you apply for unemployment benefits, your claim will remain pending. If the DOL does not approve the plan retroactively, you will be made whole.
Work Share Program Update: Review and comment on this Workshare Roster by noon on 5/11/21
Update: Today we received the list from Rutgers UHR showing who is expected to be eligible to participate in the work share program and furloughs. This is the list that is intended to be attached with our work sharing program application that goes to the New Jersey Department of Labor (NJ DOL). The application must be signed by both the employer and union. As a union, we now have the opportunity to provide final input about the list’s accuracy.
Background: UHR prepared a preliminary list showing who might not be eligible to participate in the work share program because of leave status, secondary appointments, layoff/recall, etc. Then, UHR sent the preliminary list to the departments to verify or modify it. Departments were additionally asked to exclude anyone who is fully grant funded, known to be potentially ineligible because of a second job, or who serves a critical operational need.Here is what we need every union member to do right now:
- Review: the list provided by UHR
- Look for your name to determine if UHR considers you eligible to participate in work sharing (i.e. you will be expected to furlough).
- Report back to us about whether or not the list is accurate. Respond to us no later than 12:00 noon on Tuesday, May 11, 2021 by clicking here.
What not to do:
- Do not request to be furloughed or not furloughed because of a preference; stick to the official reasons listed in our form
- Do not apply for New Jersey Unemployment benefits yet. You will receive instructions from both us and Rutgers about how and when to apply.
What happens next?
We will communicate with UHR about any inaccuracies in the list. Assuming those issues are resolved, the application to the NJ DOL will be finalized and hopefully approved quickly in time for you to begin your furlough days (and for you to apply for unemployment benefits).