Unemployment center works on holiday

Marketplace Staff Feb 16, 2009
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Unemployment center works on holiday

Marketplace Staff Feb 16, 2009
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Steve Chiotakis: With the number of job losses piling up, states are being inundated with unemployment claims. In Nevada, the unemployment call center is staying open today — a federal holiday — to avoid a huge backlog. Danielle Karson reports.


Danielle Karson: Nevada is feeling the pain, with unemployment claims jumping to a whopping 100,000 every week.

May Worthy: A lot of time, people will get busy signals when they’re calling, because our lines are so jam packed, people aren’t able to get through. And to close just causes even more of a back up.

May Worthy is with Nevada’s Department of Unemployment, Training and Rehabilitation. She says the call center is logging about 25,000 calls a week — up from 17,000 just a few months ago. Nevada, like other states, blames the housing bust and Wall Street meltdown.

Worthy: In the beginning, we were seeing the majority of the layoffs happening in construction-related, mortgage-related types of industry. Now, it’s just non-discriminate.

Today’s unemployment hot spots are all over the map: Michigan and Rhode Island top the list at 10 percent; California and Nevada 9 percent. Nationally, more than 4.5 million workers are receiving unemployment checks.

In Washington, I’m Danielle Karson for Marketplace

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