CFA Member Reflects on Guidance, Help from Past Unemployment Benefits Workshop

Next week, CFA begins offering its Unemployment Insurance workshop. Only this time, the workshop moves to an online format: a webinar.

The format change, as well as the resource-rich materials, are being updated to reflect the age we’re living in now as leaders are adding COVID-19 benefits to their presentation.

It’s a similar, yet different workshop than the one Dr. James Findlay has gone through over the semesters and over the years.

Dr. Findlay is a lecturer in the Department of Religious Studies at California State University, Northridge. He teaches an array of topics like Contemporary Ethical Issues and Religion, Logic, and the Media

Navigating and teaching religion is second-nature for the lecturer; it’s his expertise. Unemployment insurance, at first, was not. So years earlier, he attended his union’s workshop, because he wanted to be able to access benefits that he wasn’t aware of.

He said the workshop helped him accurately apply so his benefits came in. Dr. Findlay hopes this year’s webinars help contingent faculty and fellow union members as much as it helped him.

“Everyone should (sign up for the webinar), especially those who have never applied for UI before,” said Dr. Findlay. “Those of us who are lecturers, part-time lecturers who are always contingent and this is money that is due to us that we have a right to access. We should make sure that we access all possible means of supporting ourselves.”

As too do CFA leaders, who understand the need to learn about the additional COVID-19 benefits offered this year for contingent faculty.

“Our CFA Unemployment Workshops have helped hundreds of faculty over the years to get more money in their pockets when they are off contract during the summer and winter breaks,” said Meghan O’Donnell, CFA Statewide Associate Vice President of Lecturers – North. “However, even during the best of times, the application process can be challenging and confusing to navigate alone. So, in the age of COVID-19, with shelter-in-place rules making in-person help impossible, the CFA Lecturers’ Council felt it was critical to provide virtual support and guidance to our faculty community who rely on this financial relief.”  

CFA member Antonio Gallo will lead the workshops, which begin next week.

These webinars will review eligibility, and how to apply for, collect, and maintain unemployment.  Advance registration is required to attend – see registration links below. Participation is limited so please register for only one webinar.

If you haven’t signed up for CFA membership, consider becoming a member to ensure we can continue offering these critical services to our faculty. You can join CFA here