Sen. Rob Sampson Statement on Senate Passage of S.B. 317: An Act Concerning Unemployment for Striking Employees

April 13, 2022

Sen. Rob Sampson (R-Wolcott) today issued a statement in opposition of the Senate’s passage of S.B. 317, which extends taxpayer-funded unemployment benefits to employees who go on strike against their employer for at least two consecutive weeks, with as little as two employees initiating and sustaining the strike.


After hearing hours of compelling debate from Senator Sampson and Senate Republicans, Senate Democrats offered an amendment that moves the legislation’s effective date ahead by two years, to July 2024.


“This is an absurd bill on its face. The language is so vague that it opens the door to taxpayer-funded unemployment benefits for nearly any given subset of employees who willingly walk-away from their job, regardless of the nature of the dispute. This is an affront to the concepts of American fairness and freedom,” said Senator Sampson.


“The unemployment system exists for a reason. It’s for Connecticut residents who lose their jobs through no fault of their own. It is patently unfair to these individuals to extend the same benefits to others who willingly walk away from employment. As a free society in Connecticut and the United States, we are free to make individual choices. From these choices, we’re subject to the opportunity or failure that goes along with it. We must accept responsibility regardless of the outcome. This legislation removes this personal responsibility and ultimately places it on the employer and fellow taxpayers.


“For the Democrat Senate majority to offer an amendment pushing back the effective date of this law to July 2024, in the eleventh hour, is proof that even they know this is a harmful bill. It shows that they’ve blinked in the face of the reasonable arguments presented by me and my Senate Republican colleagues. Nonetheless, based solely on their majority, they have advanced this bill in the face of hardworking Connecticut residents,” he said.