People are having a hard time getting signed up for unemployment benefits. The state says from March 1st to April 4th that the Illinois Department of Employment Security took 513,173 initial unemployment claims, that’s 24,000 more claims than were filed last year.
House GOP Leader Jim Durkin says he’s hearing daily from constituents about being unable to file for benefits. Durkin says he’s been asking the Governor’s office for weeks about how IDES can react faster to a widespread economic crisis hitting Illinois families and just before his press conference started the Governor’s office released a pile of stats on how hard IDES has been working.
IDES says that employees have logged 6500 hours of overtime and increased call center capacity by 40 percent. The Governor’s office says that gig economy workers will be able to claim benefits by May 11.