HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – The complaints haven’t stopped so we haven’t stopped asking the Unemployment Compensation office what they’re doing to address all of your concerns. We spoke with a woman who hasn’t received any of her benefits and is having a hard time just getting by.
Marissa Clouser has received her PIN and debit card, and she says her claims have all gone through, but she hasn’t received any money since filing March 19th.
“I just got an apartment last July, so I can’t even afford rent. I’ve actually had to have my family help pay, which is something I don’t like to do. I don’t like asking people for help,” said Clouser.
We asked the Unemployment Compensation office why Clouser, and others like her haven’t been paid.
“It’s simply part of a process. We don’t start making payments right away. We have to hold onto payments until we have sorted out what the person’s situation is, and whether or not they can receive benefits,” said Susan Dickinson, Director of Unemployment Compensation Benefits Policy.
But how are you supposed to know what the issue with your claim is if you can’t get ahold of anyone? The email backup is now even longer, 49 days.
“We have increased our staff significantly as of the end of May. We currently have 1,444 total Unemployment Compensation staff that we will anticipate having by the beginning of the month,” said Jerry Oleksiak, Pennsylvania Secretary of Labor and Industry.
They’ve also created a guide online that tells people what they should do in different scenarios. The office says, there are still 300,000 regular unemployment claims they’re still working on since this pandemic began, a tough reality for those relying on that money.
“I can’t even afford to buy groceries right now, so I’m bare necessities basically,” said Clouser.
The Department of Labor and Industry is holding a virtual town hall this Thursday at 1 p.m. regarding most commonly asked unemployment questions. You can access it at http://access.live/palabor.