Arizonans now able to apply for unemployment benefits due to virus

Mar 24, 2020, 4:15 AM
(AP Photo)...
(AP Photo)
(AP Photo)

PHOENIX — Arizonans who are not working due to the coronavirus were able to start applying for unemployment benefits on Monday.

This comes as the number of people who’ve applied for unemployment benefits in Arizona has skyrocketed.

Last week, more than 29,000 people applied for unemployment benefits, according to the Arizona Department of Economic Security. That’s up from a weekly average of 3,500.

Last week, some of the requirements to apply for unemployment benefits in Arizona were waived.

That includes the requirement to be without a job for at least a week before being able to apply for unemployment benefits. People also no longer have to be actively searching for work to apply for benefits.

Unemployment benefits will also be available for people whose hours at work have been reduced as well as for those who are quarantined or are caring for a family member with the coronavirus.

Gov. Doug Ducey issued an executive order on Friday to loosen the unemployment benefits requirements.

“These are important steps to get help to Arizonans out of work and struggling to make ends meet because of COVID-19,” Ducey said in a statement.

Arizonans who are approved for unemployment benefits will get $240 each week for up to 26 weeks.

In a statement sent to KTAR News 92.3 FM, the Arizona Department of Economic Security stated it’s “doing everything possible to get Arizonans benefits as soon as possible, including adding additional staff in response to increased application volume.”

It’s also expanding the capacity to take applications over the phone.

According to DES, the fastest and easiest way to apply for unemployment benefits is online, but applicants without internet access can also call 1(877) 600-2722.

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Arizonans now able to apply for unemployment benefits due to virus