1.3 Millions more Americans applied for unemployment in the United States last week as the economy continues to flush from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The number of new receivables has fallen over the past 16 weeks and decreased by 10,000 last week compared to the week before, although the number has hovered over 1 million in the past month.
Those who have just begun to receive unemployment receive only a few weeks of the additional $ 600 that the federal government gives to those who apply for unemployment. The extra money, which is given above what the states give through their own programs, will expire at the end of the month. Without additional cash, the average unemployment check is about $ 350 per week.
Lawmakers will return to Congress to negotiate a possible extension on July 20, but they will have less than two weeks to reach a compromise before the extra cash is planned to stay. Meanwhile, the Trump administration unveiled its solution to alleviate the millions of unemployed: a campaign that tells them to find a new job.
Suspension orders in March caused a huge increase in new unemployment claims, which peaked at over 6 million claims in one week at the end of March. When the states began opening reopening measures in May, the economy saw much-needed, but small, relief. The country had 4 million people returning to work in June.
But the resumption measures may have come at a steep price. Some of the states that were among the first to reopen have seen dramatic upheavals in new cases in recent weeks. A handful, including California, Texas and Arizona, made some kind of reopening changes and targeted indoor venues such as restaurants, bars and gyms, possibly leaving many unemployed again.
And millions more Americans remain unemployed after months of being out of work. By mid-June, more than 17 million Americans were still unemployed, while thousands more left the workforce altogether.
That figure does not include players who play traditionally who do not qualify for unemployment but who received support to receive benefits through the Pandemic Unemployment program created as part of the Care Act. As of last week, more than 14 million people in 47 states were claiming unemployment insurance as part of the program, according to figures this week.
One of these people is Cindy Lang, who has run her own house painting business near Cleveland, Ohio, for 18 years and has clients in seven states. She earns about 25-30% of her regular income because fewer people apply for her jobs and she needs to protect herself from clients who do not want to follow social distance guidelines or wear masks while she is at home.
Lang, 57, is the leading caregiver for his elderly disabled parents, who both suffer from respiratory diseases. She said that the inability to work normally has been “a long, tumultuous nightmare”.
It took her three months to get her first unemployment check and during that period she relied on food stamps and programs that postponed her mortgage payments and accounts. These deferral programs are coming to an end, as is the government’s $ 600 increase in weekly unemployment benefits.
Without the extra $ 600, Lang will have to survive $ 180 a week on state unemployment insurance. “I would not be shocked if I had to file for bankruptcy or lose my house,” Lang said.
She urged politicians who have not yet found a replacement for the $ 600 program, and especially those who want to end it, to spend a few hours with her and other unemployed people to understand how much stress they are under. Lang said, “I would not want this on my worst enemy.”