Nonprofit Quarterly: Coronavirus Requires Immediate State Advocacy

April 7, 2020

Nonprofit Quarterly: Coronavirus Requires Immediate State Advocacy

This text was published in Nonprofit Quarterly’s article: “Nonprofits and Funders: Coronavirus Requires Immediate State Advocacy”


Unemployment Insurance:

When Congress passes a law, no one waves a magic wand making everything line up. In many cases, states must adjust their laws to accommodate federal requirements. That’s the situation now with the unemployment insurance provisions in the new federal CARES Act, which took a step in the correct direction, but more is needed. Some relief for nonprofits could come at the state level to “ensure nonprofit employees are eligible for Unemployment Insurance (UI) changes due to the pandemic response.”

  • “We support efforts to ensure that that those COVID-related UI claims are not charged to the employer’s experience rating. We understand that DEED is working on this provision for UI; since nonprofits have the ability to self-insure, it may need to be spelled out in legislation that reimbursing employers are to be treated similarly as those that use the state UI system.”—Minnesota Council of Nonprofits
  • “The…state needs to take two additional steps…: 1. Ensure that…the General Statutes allow the state of North Carolina to receive the federal funds to cover half of the costs of COVID-19 related UI claims for self-insured nonprofits and to apply these funds toward the reimbursements that these nonprofits would ordinarily owe for these claims; and 2. Provide forgiveness from North Carolina’s UI Trust Fund for the other half of the amounts that these self-insured nonprofits would typically need to reimburse the state for COVID-19 related UI claims.…To the extent that the General Assembly makes temporary changes to unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, it is important to fully hold harmless nonprofits have the option of self-insuring and reimbursing the state for UI claims…rather than paying SUTA based on experience rating.—North Carolina Center for Nonprofits

Click here to contact your Governor and State Legislators today!

Click here to see what other state nonprofit associations are saying about COVID-19 unemployment claims charge relief.

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We first started using First Nonprofit’s Unemployment Savings Program when we were a small startup nonprofit.  We didn’t have an HR department and needed expertise in the event that an unemployment claim was made.  We knew we were eligible to be a reimbursing employer, but weren’t sure how to navigate that process.  They made it easy to set things up, plan for, and then manage claims when they came at a very reasonable cost. The amount of time and stress they’ve saved us dealing with all this has been worth way more than the cost.  We’ve now grown to a large nonprofit and do have an HR department but have no plans to stop using their services.  I highly recommend them to every nonprofit I come into contact with!


Throughout our membership in the Unemployment Savings Program, First Nonprofit understood our demands, community dynamics, and the importance of seamless services; that allowed us to serve our constituents better.

Prevent Blindness America, Chicago, IL

Because INCS advocates for the operating conditions that allow charter public schools to provide high quality public education, partnering with First Nonprofit was an easy decision. First Nonprofit’s unemployment programs provide our member schools two operating elements crucial to their ability to provide high quality public education: savings and budget certainty. Capable, committed teachers are the key to student success. By participating in the unemployment insurance savings plan, charter public schools gain peace of mind and are able to invest more money in their teachers.

Illinois Network of Charter Schools, Chicago, IL

It has been our sincere pleasure to maintain a strong, vibrant business partnership with First Nonprofit. We greatly admire their strong industry knowledge, technical expertise, constant professionalism, knowledgeable and dedicated staff. They are always extremely responsive, personable and provide us with the necessary guidance and recommendations on a numerous variety of employment scenarios.

Thresholds, Chicago, IL

NYCON members who use First Nonprofit’s programs enjoy enduring savings and improved efficiency. Our association knows that success, because from the beginning, we achieved the same great benefits. Great savings, seamless technology, and responsive service. NYCON highly recommends First Nonprofit’s remarkable unemployment solutions.

New York Council of Nonprofits, Albany, NY

Visually Impaired Preschool Services has been a client of First Non-Profit since it was first offered as a benefit of VisionServe Alliance. We completed a thorough evaluation of cash savings to our agency before taking advantage of this wonderful benefit and it has been a very wise decision. Our experience with the processes from accounting to claims have been professional, expeditious and easy.

Visually Impaired Preschool Services, Louisville, KY

Luckily for us, our interactions regarding any issues with staffing has been very minimal! I can say that all other interactions with regards to billing, 941 reporting, etc. have been extremely pleasant, accommodating and easy to work with. Kim Ghanayem is always prompt, professional and friendly. Thank you so much!

Neurologic Music Therapy Services of Arizona, Phoenix, AZ

First Nonprofit has been easy to work with and makes the administrative process easier and smoother. We enjoy working with you.

Visually Impaired Preschool Services, Louisville, KY