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Some 40 Percent Of Jobless Claims Are Ineligible. The Jobless Want To Know Why

Disney World workers protested Florida's unemployment system from their homes across Orlando. Photo credit: Unite Here

Some 40 percent of unemployment claims since March 15 have been rejected as ineligible. 

That’s according to the latest numbers from the Department of Economic Opportunity. 

The numbers show some 80 percent of claims have been processed and $523 million dollars paid out. 

But not to Keith Mahan. He doesn’t know why his application was deemed ineligible. The Orlando resident had been a Red Lobster restaurant manager for 29 years when he was let go.  

“The website is just a 4-year-old could design it better. They set it up so people would get frustrated and just discontinue using it.” 

Osceola County, home to Central Florida’s sprawling theme parks, ranks second after Monroe in the number of unemployment claims filed — at 8 percent of the workforce. 

“One of the biggest crises right now is that it’s taken weeks for people to get an answer,” says Rep. Anna Eskamani. “They got an answer — and no guidance. And that’s where the heart of the stress really is.” 

The Department of Economic Opportunity did not immediately respond to a request for comment. 

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Amy Green

About Amy Green

Reporter and Producer

Amy Green covers the environment and climate change at WMFE News. She is an award-winning journalist and author whose extensive reporting on the Everglades is featured in the book MOVING WATER, published by Johns Hopkins University Press, and podcast DRAINED, available wherever you get your podcasts. Amy’s ... Read Full Bio »