DETROIT – If you tried entering an unemployment office Thursday, you found locked doors and information guiding you to online resources.
The demand right now is enormous, according to Erica Quealy, a spokesperson for the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency.
“We can confirm that the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency is currently experiencing an average 550% increase in claims compared to normal anticipated activity this time of year,” Quealy said.
Since you can’t register in person, you have to do so online or over the phone. The website is slow and the phone lines are backed up because of the number of people trying to file claims.
If you want to apply for unemployment, click here to do so online or call 866-500-0017.
“Through Gov. (Gretchen) Whitmer’s executive action and existing state programs, there are resources for employers affected by COVID-19,” a spokesperson for the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity said. “We are also strongly urging job providers facing work shortages to place their employees on temporary leave, as opposed to termination, so that they may remain eligible for potential federal assistance.”