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Nearly 13% of Ohio's Population Have Received Unemployment Assistance at Some Point This Year

Kim Hall, ODJFS Director
Jo Ingles
Statehouse News Bureau
Kim Hall, director of the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, encourages those who are exhausting their unemployment benefits to find out if they're eligible for additional benefits because of the pandemic.

More than 1.5 million Ohioans—nearly 13 percent of the state’s population—have received some sort of unemployment assistance since the pandemic began last spring. And some of those people could still be receiving benefits. 

Ohio Department of Job and Family Services Director Kim Hall says 853,000 Ohioans have received $7.4 billion dollars worth of traditional unemployment payments since the pandemic began.

“We have processed more than 95% of traditional unemployment claims, and the only ones pending are those that have complexities that require more attention or more newly filed claims that have just come in," Hall said.

Hall says 706,000 Ohioans have received over $7.1 billion in federally-funded Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. She says some people might be exhausting their benefits but urges them to check to see if they might be eligible for additional benefits due to the pandemic.

Many of those receiving unemployment have been able to get around work requirements that are normally mandated for recipients. But starting Dec. 7, new recipients will have to satisfy the work requirements. Still, the agency's Bruce Madson explains that requirement can be easily satisfied in a number of ways, including applying for a job or posting a resume on the state's employment website. He says there are COVID safe ways to comply with that requirement virtually as well. And though ODJFS cannot waive the mandate, he adds the agency will be as flexible as possible with this requirement. 
Copyright 2020 The Statehouse News Bureau. To see more, visit The Statehouse News Bureau.

Jo Ingles
Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment.