In response to the federal COVID-19 Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program, Rhode Island’s Department of Labor and Training partnered with the nonprofit Research Improving People’s Lives and Amazon Web Services to develop a cloud-based system to share data and improve management of unemployment claims. This enabled Rhode Island to be among the first states in the nation to provide Pandemic Unemployment Assistance benefits in the face of record-high employment claims during the COVID-19 crisis.
The Rhode Island Ecosystem is an analytic system, managed by the Executive Office of Health and Human Services, that links data at the person and family level across state agencies to drive holistic improvements in human well-being. A cross-agency eMOU outlines the data-sharing process and permissible uses for cross-agency data. Several high-impact uses have been conducted, including projects focused on opioid use disorder and child maltreatment prevention. More recently, the ecosystem has collaborated with partners in state government to support a public dashboard that tracks Rhode Island COVID-19 cases and response, as well as internal daily dashboards for the Governor and other high-level policymakers on system capacity.