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The latest Montana politics, elections and Legislature news.

Over 17,000 New Unemployment Claims Filed In Montana This Week

When Montanans went to the state’s unemployment website to file a claim on March 20, 2020 they were greeted with this message: "Unemployment Registration is currently experiencing high user load and may be slow, unresponsive, or down."
Screen capture: montanaworks.gov March 20, 2020, 6:35 p.m.
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More than 17,000 new claims for unemployment benefits have been filed in Montana since new regulations took effect last week that expand eligibility to workers impacted by the novel coronavirus pandemic.

An average of 2,100 people a day in the state filed for unemployment from March 17 through March 24.

Gov. Steve Bullock’s administration announced last Tuesday that workers sent home due to pandemic concerns, and workers caring for a family member impacted by COVID-19 are now eligible for the benefits.

The benefit expansion does not cover workers afraid of gathering in a group or refusing to go to work.

The Montana Department of Labor & Industry reports its unemployment registration system is seeing a high load of users and may be slow, unresponsive, or down.

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