should i fill in "additional info" on Pennsylvania unemploy app?

by Mel
(Doylestown, Pa, USA)

Hello, newbie here so I apologize if my question seems elementary.

I am in the process of filling out PAs online unemployment application and would appreciate any and all advice. Towards the end of the questions there is a section which states:

"Please enter any additional information which you feel may affect your eligibility for unemployment compensation. Your response will only be recorded for approximately 110 lines or 8,000 characters. Anything typed after this maximum has been reached will not be saved or submitted. (Optional) "

Should I fill in any additional information or leave this blank ? If I do submit additional information, will my former employer be given a copy or have the option to read it?

Also, I am unsure what selection I should make when it asks for a "more detailed reason for leaving my employer."
I worked at a residential treatment facility for male juvenile sex offenders and was informed that I was fired for:

1. Allegedly showing favoritism to a resident,

2. Ignoring a different residents request to make a phone call (this was all based on the residents word because no other staff was in the room. Also this resident has an extensive history of inappropriate boundaries with myself along with mental health issues which continue to emerge and effect his grasp on reality)

3. Working on a side project for the school at this facility during my scheduled hours as a counselor. Was not supposed to be done while on the clock as a counselor. I was given permission by the supervisor on shift but now he is denying it.

This last "rule" is NOT uniformly enforced because they allow one counselor who is also a teacher to be on the clock as a counselor and teaching a class. So he is being paid his counselor rate and teachers pay at the same time. I have never double
billed. He also has never been reprimanded for completing school related work (typing up tests, grading papers etc) while on the clock as a counselor.
Its ok for me to get fired for something that someone else is allowed to do on a weekly basis and it is overlooked ?

Hi Mel,

I'm going to venture out here and say that many people leave it blank .. and therefore are denied because the adjudicator does not have anything to base investigative type questions on during the "interview".

Understand that the common prevailing advice for "appeal letters" is to keep it as short as possible. Only enough to meet the requirements to get a hearing because you will have your chance to present ALL information at the hearing.

Whether what you put in the additional statement ends up in the employer's hands is defined in the statutes. Whether it becomes a part of the "state file" at the hearing is defined by statute. (I'm sure that it does in PA)
PA does not send out a state file with a hearing notice because hearings are in person. The file is viewed at the appeal office.

PA freaks out when they have to schedule phone hearings. They have a statute about this which is the reason they get a little unsettled.

So therefore, if a person has done their homework and understands the things that influence a favorable or unfavorable decision .. yes, I think you need to briefly touch on the items with regard to your separation that you have determined should make you eligible for unemployment benefits.

But contrarily, the information provided by you in this space can be the information which erases the need for a detailed interview because you provided the info to disqualify yourself. Preconceived notions of how unemployment work if the notion is incorrect, can squash you.

Mel, this is why I'm here:)

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