For Immediate Release: May 29, 2020 Media Contact: Georgia Smith, (208) 332-3570 ext. 2102
The Idaho Department of Labor has contracted with a call center to provide additional agents for claimants who want to talk to someone about their claim beginning Monday. The goal is for claimants to eventually experience shorter hold times.
All claimants who call Labor will be directed to call a new toll-free number – (833) 410-1009 – where an additional 30 people will be available to answer calls, take new claims over the phone and unlock accounts, among other tasks. These additional resources free up Labor staff to handle more complex issues with claims.
For Immediate Release: May 14, 2020 Information Contact: Craig Shaul, (208) 332-3570 ext. 3201 or Salvador Vazquez, (208) 332-3570 ext. 3218
Initial claims reached 5,795 during the week ending May 9, a 23 percent decline from the previous week.
Laid-off Idaho workers filed 131,101 initial claims for unemployment benefits during the eight weeks of the COVID-19 state of emergency – 2.2 times the total number of initial claims filed in all of 2019.
It was the sixth week the number of new claims fell, while continued claims – the number of people who claimed benefits – fell to 65,478, a decline of 9 percent from the previous week.
For Immediate Release: April 30, 2020 Information Contact: Georgia Smith, (208) 332-3570 ext. 2102
Idahoans who are out of work and have exhausted regular unemployment insurance benefits can now apply for extended benefits under the CARES Act online at labor.idaho.gov/claimantportal.
Changes made by the Idaho Department of Labor to its system will add an additional 13 weeks to an eligible claimant’s unemployment benefit year. To qualify, a claimant must have a claim with a benefit year ending date after July 1, 2019.
The payments are retroactive to March 29 or the first week after an individual exhausts benefits, whichever is later.
For Immediate Release: April 30, 2020 Information Contact: Georgia Smith, (208) 332-3570 ext. 2102 or Craig Shaul, (208) 332-3570 ext. 3201
Laid-off Idaho workers filed 117,811 initial claims for unemployment benefits during the six weeks of the COVID-19 state of emergency – twice the total number of initial claims filed in all of 2019.
Initial claims reached 8,827 during the week ending April 25, a 32 percent decline from the previous week.
It was the third week the number of new claims fell, while continued claims – the number of valid claims filed by people who are eligible, currently claiming benefits and still unable to return to work – reached 71,416.Continue reading →
The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic has created unprecedented disruptions to the economy. Each week in March brought news and developments that were historic and overshadowed the previous week’s developments. It has been impossible to keep up with the magnitude and volume of the economic impact affecting Idaho and its regions.
To document this event in Idaho, and the changes our state is experiencing from week to week, the Idaho Department of Labor is providing a weekly update. Pertinent events and data as it becomes available will be provided for each region in Idaho, the state as a whole and the context of the national economy.
For Immediate Release: April 13, 2020 Information Contact: Georgia Smith, (208) 332-3570 ext. 2102
The Idaho Department of Labor is adjusting its phone schedule to accept incoming calls between 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. MST, and is reserving the hours of 4 to 6 p.m. MST for processing claims.
The move is expected to aid hundreds more recently unemployed Idahoans daily by freeing up time for staff to return phone calls, resolve issues preventing payment and process claims more quickly.
“Our goal is serve Idahoans as quickly as possible through this difficult time, and adjusting our phone schedule means we can focus on processing claims so Idahoans will receive their benefit payments sooner. This move reduces wait times for phone calls and click to chat interactions,” said Labor Director Jani Revier.
For Immediate Release: April 9, 2020 Information Contact: Georgia Smith, (208) 332-3570 ext. 2102 or Craig Shaul, (208) 332-3570 ext. 3201
Idaho workers laid off due to the coronavirus filed 30,904 initial claims for unemployment insurance between March 29 and April 4, a decrease of 6.2 percent from the previous week’s record level of 32,941.
The combined three-week total of claims filed since Gov. Brad Little declared a state of emergency the week of March 8 is 77,430 – an increase of 7,400 percent.
For Immediate Release: March 30, 2020 Information Contact: Georgia Smith, (208) 332-3570 ext. 2102
People are asked to visit Labor website for answers; file for benefits online
Idaho is one of several states across the nation where the surge of newly laid-off workers is overwhelming state unemployment phone systems.
Laid-off workers who need to file for benefits – or have questions about unemployment insurance – should file online or visit the agency website instead of calling the department.
“You do not have to call the department to file a claim. Everything can be done online and most questions can be answered by reviewing the posted material,” said Idaho Department of Labor director Jani Revier. “Our call volume is high and most callers are receiving a busy signal and will not get through.”
Jammed phone lines also prevent the department’s claim specialists from calling out to resolve issues with individual claims. When the department notifies a claimant there is an issue with their claim, the individual needs to wait for an agency claims specialist to call. Continue reading →