Friday, September 23, 2011

We Need to Deal with Fraud

As a Recruiting Manager, I get a lot of inquiries for job opportunities. I call each and every one of them back. I'm constantly amazed, though less so now than when I first started, at the number of people who, in this economy, don't call me back.

I can see a few who decided after they applied that they weren't interested. But this is a lot more than a few.

A few months ago I started a log of every single person I call, when I left a message, and what the result of the call was (interview, not qualified, etc). I'm starting to see duplicates now. People who applied a few months ago and never responded who are applying again.

*insert warning bell here* I can't help but think that some of these people are fraudulently applying to continue to get their unemployment. It frustrates and infuriates me because there is very little I can do about it. I can't necessarily prove it.

What I am planning to do is find out who I can send information to at the state. Whether or not they'll do anything with it, I don't know. But I feel like I have an obligation to report these people. It's the state's job to investigate to see if they really are employable and not truly searching for jobs, or if there were legitimate reasons for not responding or applying more than once.

It's not like it's an unheard of phenomenon.
"... as jobless claims increase in this jobless recovery, abuses in unemployment insurance have hit record levels.   States paid out a whopping $16.5 billion to ineligible individuals last year."
My question is, if the government knows that $16.5 BILLION (with a B) in payments went out to ineligible individuals, why aren't they stopping those payments? Is it just an estimate? It seems like a pretty solid number so somewhere people must know who is taking advantage of the system. And it seems like the government is just sort of shrugging "oh well, what can we do?"
"Whether it's intentional fraud, or omitting or misstating information on an electronic claims form is a dubious distinction.   Labor Department officials told The Fiscal Times that the overpayment explosion is more a natural consequence of rising unemployment insurance rolls inundating overwhelmed state systems—not rising fraud."
Isn't omitting or misstating information fraud? What am I missing here? It should be an even bigger priority to reduce and rid the system of fraud in these economically difficult times. It's a form of theft in my eyes - people taking advantage and taking money that doesn't belong to them - possibly preventing others from receiving benefits they are eligible for and need.

I was on unemployment for maybe a full month over a decade ago. I was so paranoid and conscious of every single application and inquiry...I filled out all my paperwork to a T. It's not that hard to do and get correct.

Getting off of unemployment was a huge relief for me too. Another reason I cannot understand people who want to wait to get a job until their unemployment runs out. It seems so dishonest to me.

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