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MONDAY, JANUARY 28: UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCEProfile America — Monday, January 28th. As the Great Depression approached its worst,
Wisconsin made the nation's first governmental direct relief effort for the unemployed. On this date in 1932, it enacted unemployment insurance.
Wisconsin was soon followed by a half-dozen other states before the Social Security Act in middecade moved all states to adopt such programs by 1937.
Wisconsin's program issued it's first unemployment check in August, in the amount of
$15. By 2010, states and local governments took in over
$75 billion from the payroll tax to fund unemployment insurance. But they spent nearly
$135 billion in such assistance, more than double the outlay of 2009.
Profile America is in its 16th year as a public service of the U.S. Census Bureau.
Sources: Kane's Famous First Facts, 4525U.S. Census Bureau, State and Local Government Finances Summary: 2010
Profile America is produced by the Center for New Media and Promotions of the U.S. Census Bureau. These daily features are available as produced segments, ready to air, on a monthly CD or on the Internet at
http://www.census.gov (look for "Multimedia Gallery" by the "Newsroom" button).
SOURCE U.S. Census Bureau