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On Sunday, 50 members of the New York Unemployment Project took to the street to spread holiday carols about the Christmas their families are facing. Caroling unemployment inspired versions of traditional Christmas carols, NYUP members dressed up as the Grinch and showed Lower Manhattan what President Bush had sent them for the holidays – a big box filled with empty promises.

The action was covered widely on the nightly news on NBC 4, WABC 7, and the WB. Links to print coverage are below from the Daily News, an editorial in Newsday and Hoy.

NY DAILY NEWS, December 23, 2002
Fight end of Dole package

Demonstrators turned "Jingle Bells" and "Deck the Halls" from holiday tunes into protest songs as they rallied near City Hall yesterday to demand an extension of federal unemployment benefits.

About 50 members of the New York Unemployment Project, an organization of jobless New Yorkers, demonstrated on Park Row. They called on Washington politicians to continue the Temporary Extended Unemployment Compensation program.

"Christmas is going to be more modest this year," said Joe Bergmann, a former creative director for a Web site, whose benefits ran out in July. Unemployment benefits kept Bergmann and his family - he has a wife and two daughters - financially afloat after he lost his job following the World Trade Center terror attacks.

Benefits for more than 60,000 New Yorkers will expire on Saturday. That total is in addition to the more than 180,000 jobless New Yorkers whose extended benefits already have run out, NYUP organizers say.

The TEUC program stretched the original 26-week period of compensation by 13 weeks. Congress adjourned Nov. 22 without extending the program.

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