Tuesday, August 17, 2010

What Happens When You Cut Unemployment Benefits?

The unemployed find work. NYT reports on the Danish experience:
Struggling to keep its budget under control after the financial crisis, the government in June cut into its benefits system, the world’s most generous, by limiting unemployment payments to two years instead of four. Having found that recipients either get work right away or take any job as their checks run out, officials are also redoubling long-standing efforts to move Danes more quickly out of the safety net.
But Denmark is still quite the Nanny State that slaps you around when no one is looking:
Torben Frederiksen, 32, a plumber out of work for three months, said his employment center forbade him from attending his mother’s funeral because it conflicted with a meeting with his counselor.

“They told me that a funeral was no excuse for missing my appointment,” he said. Mr. Frederiksen went anyway, and was granted another meeting.

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