New York state has received a significant amount of new applications from people trying to collect unemployment insurance (UI) after businesses cut back or closed indefinitely amid the pandemic.
The flood of new applications overwhelmed the state’s Department of Labor and its systems, causing outages and disruptions, according to the agency.
“We are experiencing an unprecedented increase in the volume of calls/traffic for UI claims. This surge has created intermittent interruptions in service,” the Labor Department said in a statement Thursday.
The Labor Department said it is averaging 250,000 logins per day, which is four times the normal average. The agency also received 159,000 calls, and “on average,” it gets about 10,000 daily calls.
We are experiencing an unprecedented increase in the volume of calls/traffic for UI claims. This surge has created intermittent interruptions in service.
Here’s how we’re working to address the situation so everyone who is entitled to benefits receives them in a timely manner: pic.twitter.com/8ZovCM3SIC
— NYS Dept of Labor (@NYSLabor) March 19, 2020
ICYMI: Our telephone filing services have been extended through Saturdays.
📢: If you are unable to get through our system by tomorrow, you will still receive full UI benefits back to your date of unemployment. pic.twitter.com/N5WBahg6Oj
— NYS Dept of Labor (@NYSLabor) March 20, 2020
“We are seeing over a 1,000 percent increase in claims in some areas across the state,” the department wrote. In addressing the increase, it “added server capacity and dedicated more than 700 staff members to address the influx.”
It came after Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced he is to sign an order mandating that 100 percent of non-essential workers have to stay home to curb the spread of the CCP virus. Essential service staffers are still able to work.
The Epoch Times refers to the novel coronavirus, which causes the disease COVID-19, as the CCP virus because the Chinese Communist Party’s coverup and mismanagement allowed the virus to spread throughout China and create a global pandemic.
“This order excludes pharmacies, grocery stores, and others,” Cuomo said, adding that the state will set up a 90-day moratorium for commercial and residential tenants to address people who are financially suffering.
Cuomo said the state will pay a premium to businesses that have the potential to manufacture hospital items like masks and gloves.
“Ventilators are to this war what missiles were to World War II,” he said. “We need ventilators. That is the key piece of equipment.”