December 2013 unemployment rates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and IDES have been posted to the WIRE’s Unemployment Page. These rates indicate a slight improvement in unemployment in Chicago and Illinois compared to the previous months, and negligible overall improvement since last year.

With continued economic struggles in Chicago and Illinois, the consistent failure of Congress to extend unemployment insurance benefits for the long-term unemployed is especially troubling.  Without action from Congress, a total of 112,710 Illinoisans will have been denied benefits by March 1st, despite being unable to find employment. For more information on the effects of Congress’ inaction visit the WIRE Publications Catalog.  For information on what you can do about it, visit Illinois Works for the Future’s website.