Department of Labor

Unemployment in Maine's three urban areas rose in July.

While most of the news about the number of jobs lost in Maine has been troubling, May figures from the Department of Labor (DOL) showed a small glimmer of good news.

The Maine Department of Labor has been struggling to handle huge numbers of applications for unemployment benefits because of the pandemic, and those numbers are expected to grow with the passage of a new federally-funded program.

Maine Department of Labor Commissioner Laura Fortman joins us to discuss pressing topics ranging from paid time off, minimum wage, workforce shortage, equal pay, immigrant employment, and more. In her role, she oversees the state’s labor standards, employment and training, unemployment insurance, labor market information and vocational rehabilitation. Fortman brings more than 20 years of public policy and advocacy experience to the Department of Labor.