Initial unemployment claims filed in Indiana since the beginning of March.
(Hoosiers By The Numbers)
Just under 44,000 Hoosiers filed initial claims for unemployment benefits last week. While that number declines, the Department of Workforce Development is still struggling to handle high call volumes.
Starting Friday, DWD Commissioner Fred Payne says a new program will supply an extra 13 weeks of unemployment for those who have maxed out benefits. Also, self-employed workers who had unemployment applications approved should start receiving payments.
Despite the progress, Payne says the agency is still struggling to answer phone calls.
“Our wait time is still high and our call back efficiency is still – improving,” he says. “So we’re improving on both of those two fronts, but we’re still nowhere close to where we want to be.”
As of now, more than 600,000 Hoosiers have applied for unemployment insurance benefits since mid-March.