A record 6.6 million people filed for unemployment benefits across the U.S. last week because of the economic impact of the coronavirus.

That’s a historic number, exponentially higher than during the Great Depression beginning in 1929 or the Great Recession beginning in 2008.

It’s the second record-breaking weekly jobs report in a row.

Alabama Department of Labor Communications Director Tara Hutchison said nearly 81,000 claims were filed between March 22 and March 28 in Alabama.

“We are accepting a record number of claims,” she said. “We’re going to require patience on everyone’s part.”

About 75,000 of those claims were COVID-19 related, Hutchison said, with the service industry, health care, social services and retail seeing the highest number of claims.

Anyone trying to call the unemployment claim office is likely to be met with a high wait time, but keep trying, Hutchison said. You can also file online any time.

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Categories: COVID-19, Local News