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No work… Tennessee unemployment claims paid reaches 314,135

BY IVAN SANDERS
STAR STAFF
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the country significantly especially when it comes to those who have lost their jobs as an effect of the pandemic with more stores and industries still seeing the impact in their workforce.
In the state of Tennessee for the week ending May 30, 2020, there were a total of 22,784 new claims filed while there remain 302,260 continued claims according to the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development website.
New claims include those who filed for unemployment for the first time while continued claims are those who continue to weekly certify that have already filed for unemployment.
According to the website, there have been a total of 581,405 unemployment claims filed in the state. The week ending April 25th had the highest number of claims filed as there were 43,792 new claims with 324,543 continued claims for a total of 368,335 claims filed.
With the economy gradually reopening and those who had previously been laid off being called back to work, the state has seen those numbers decrease with the total claims for the current week ending period standing at 325,044 still filing for unemployment benefits – a difference of 43,291 since the highest spike.
The benefits that have been paid out are eye-popping as $285,711,045 to date has been paid to those who filed claims.
Funding for those benefits has been paid through the federal CARES Act Funding with the state’s banking account not having been touched to this point.
Northern Middle Tennessee had the highest amount of new claims for the current period with 5,754 while the Greater Memphis region close behind with 5,676.
The East Tennessee region was third in new claims filed with 2,430 while Southeast Tennessee recorded 1,798.
In comparison, the Northwest Tennessee region only saw 499 and the Upper Cumberland region with 562.
As more and more businesses continue to open their doors and with the announcement of other venues like Dollywood set to reopen within the next week, the numbers should start reflecting that as claims should start to track with the reopenings.
Restaurants, hair salons, and gyms also are continuing to call back those employees who had been laid off due to closings with many advertising for new positions due to some failing to return to work electing to continue to draw unemployment due to the additional $600 that was being paid out weekly on top of their normal draw.