Labor Department, USPS team up on ID proofing

A pilot project set to launch in 2023 will see the Department of Labor and the postal service teaming up to help unemployment insurance applicants verify identities on behalf of participating states.

The Department of Labor is planning a new pilot in the unemployment system with the U.S. Postal Service that will allow people to be identity-proofed at post offices.

“We will soon be doing a pilot with USPS … to utilize some of their retail locations so that folks in states, especially in rural areas where the state workforce agencies are farther or people don’t have internet connections and things like that, they can walk into their local post office and do ID proofing,” agency chief information officer Gundeep Ahluwalia said during a panel discussion on Wednesday hosted by FCW.

Ahluwalia said the ideals driving the Labor Department’s work on jobless aid are improving equity and timeliness and decreasing fraud, and that the forthcoming identity proofing pilot with USPS will help all three.

“Regardless of which part of the country you are, regardless of what side of the digital divide you are, whether you own a phone or have an internet connection or not, you should be able to get to your benefits when you need them the most,” he said.

On the sidelines of the event, he told FCW that details like how many states will be participating are still being worked out. The target timeline is to launch in a few locations next calendar year


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