GAO’s reports and testimonies give Congress, federal agencies, and the public timely, fact-based, non-partisan information that can improve government operations and save taxpayers billions of dollars.
Unemployment Insurance (UI) has been a key component in ensuring the financial security of America's workforce for over 70 years. In fiscal year 2004, UI covered about 129 million wage and salary workers and paid about $41 billion in benefits to nearly 9 million workers who lost their jobs.
As technological and other advances transform the U.S. economy, many of the nation's six million employers may have trouble finding employees with the skills to do their jobs well. Some experts indicate that such a skill gap already affects many employers.
The Workforce Investment Act (WIA) of 1998 required states to streamline employment and training services and established three separate funding streams for serving youth, adults, and dislocated workers, for which about $3.3 billion was appropriated for fiscal year 2003.
Although training for employed workers is largely the responsibility of employers and individuals, the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) allowed state and local entities to use federal funds for training employed workers.
In 1935, the federal National Labor Relations Act provided U.S. workers the right to bargain over wages, hours, and other terms and conditions of employment with their employers, forming the framework for collective bargaining in the United States.