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Gov. Whitmer extends unemployment eligibility, cost-sharing

Michigan officials respond to anger over unemployment filing issues
Michigan officials respond to anger over unemployment filing issues

LANSING, Mich. – Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-57, extending her earlier order expanding eligibility for unemployment benefits during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

READ: How long will it take to receive money? Michigan unemployment official answers most asked questions

The order also expands the state’s workshare program, meant to provide more tools to employers to reduce layoffs. It also extends unemployment benefits to workers who voluntarily left a job after accepting new employment but were unable to start their new position due to coronavirus.

The order also:

  • Allows anyone with an active unemployment claim to receive up to 26 weeks of benefits
  • Suspends the requirement for an individual seeking unemployment to request a registration and work search waiver from their employer
  • Allows Unemployment Insurance Agency retirees to keep their retirement benefits if they return to work to process unemployment claims or serve on the Occupational Health and Safety Commission 
  • Expands cost-sharing with employers to reduce layoffs 

“No one should have to worry about how to make ends meet during this unprecedented public health crisis,” Whitmer said. “By extending eligibility for unemployment benefits, we can help give hard-working Michiganders some financial peace of mind as we continue flattening the COVID-19 curve across Michigan.”

MORE: Q&A: Michigan unemployment agency answers questions about issues applying for benefits

How COVID-19 Spreads

Person-to-person spread

The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.

  • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

Can someone spread the virus without being sick?

  • Spread is possible before people show symptoms. People who are not showing symptoms can still be carrying the virus and can still pass it on to other people.

Spread from contact with contaminated surfaces or objects

It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

How easily the virus spreads

How easily a virus spreads from person-to-person can vary. Some viruses are highly contagious (spread easily), like measles, while other viruses do not spread as easily. Another factor is whether the spread is sustained, spreading continually without stopping.

Prevention & Treatment

There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

Click here for more guidelines from the CDC.

People who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider immediately.

Question about coronavirus? Ask Dr. McGeorge here.

Read more about coronavirus here.


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