DES MOINES, Iowa – The U.S. Department of Labor announced that during the week of March 15-21, 2020, 41,890 people who work in Iowa filed unemployment insurance claims. Last week is the first time that included a broader group of individuals eligible for claims due to the COVID-19. Of that number, 40,952 are people who live and work in the state.

A total of $10,674,711.86 of unemployment insurance benefits were paid to claimants who live or work in Iowa for the week ending on March 20.   

The top five industries with the most COVID-19 related claims last week are: 

  • Accommodation and Food Services (13,364)
  • Health Care and Social Assistance (4,936)
  • Education Services (2,698)  
  • Other Services (1,999)
  • Retail Trade (1,710)  

Iowa Workforce Development reports they successfully processed all of the initial unemployment insurance claims received last week despite the significant surge in claims.

 Iowa Workforce Development encourages the public to visit www.IowaWorkorceDevelopment.gov to file for their initial and weekly unemployment insurance claim.

Iowa Workforce Development is receiving an unprecedented level of calls, and they report having several hundred staff answering calls each day. They report long waits due to the surge and said many of the questions they receive are answered by the information contained on their website. They ask everyone to be patient when calling and to consider looking to the website first for answers to questions. 

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