ALBANY — The number of people, 80,500, filing for unemployment in New York state last week is 520 percent greater than last year, with the number filing for the first time jumping by at least 284 percent.
From Monday, March 16 through Saturday, March 21\ the state Department of Labor received more than 1.7 million phone calls and more than 2.3 million visits to the website.
To help manage the unprecedented increase in volume, the DOL is implementing a new filing system based on the first letter of the applicants first name.
Those with a last name ending in the letters “A” through “F” are to file on Monday, “G” through “N” on Tuesday, and “O” through “Z” on Wednesday. Anyone who misses the designated days is asked to file on Thursday through Saturday.
Nationwide, some 3.3 million people filed for unemployment last week.
New Yorkers seeking to file UI claims can visit labor.ny.gov or call the Telephone Claim Center at 888-783-1370.