Oregon received more than 76,500 unemployment claims last week

The number of initial claims submitted to Oregon's Employment Department last week was more than 15 times the week prior, officials say.

Posted: Mar 26, 2020 11:25 AM
Updated: Mar 26, 2020 11:36 AM

PORTLAND, Ore. — Unemployment claims in Oregon skyrocketed to more than 76,500 over the week of March 15, according to the Oregon Employment Department (OED) — more than 15 times the week immediately prior.

Over the first three days of this week, initial claims continued to track at record levels, the agency said.

"This comes as a sharp increase from 4,900 initial claims filed during the week of March 8," officials said in a statement. "The Employment Department is taking several measures to meet the unprecedented need for unemployment benefits, which is largely due to reduced hours and layoffs related to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic."

The majority of processed claims in Oregon have come from the leisure and hospitality sector as restaurants and hotels close or scale back their operations. Others came from health care and retail.

Last week saw the highest number of initial jobless claims in the U.S. since the federal government began tracking that data in 1967 — about 3.28 million across the nation.


RELATED: Oregon eases unemployment requirements as COVID-19 response causes lay-off boom


Ironically, OED has had to hire new employees over the past two weeks to deal with the overwhelming number of claims, as well as shifting workers to different program areas. The agency has also doubled the number of workers processing unemployment claims.

"Still, record levels of unemployment claims cause longer wait times, as the department works to gather and process the details factoring into each individual claimant’s eligibility and weekly benefit amount," the agency said. "We encourage Oregonians who have lost their jobs to file claims using our online system to lower wait times by phone."

A new video from the Employment Department shows step-by-step details for filing an online claim.

"The department also continues to offer job seeker and employer services, including more phone and virtual options for appropriate social distancing," OED said. "We are present to help Oregonians who have experienced tremendous disruptions, while also doing our part to follow health and safety guidelines for our communities."

The Employment Department has also added a COVID-19 web page to serve as a resource guide. It includes an overview of the Unemployment Insurance program, along with questions and answers about specific COVID-19 coronavirus-related situations and unemployment benefits.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 313161

Reported Deaths: 3594
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah51245642
Washington34995276
Marion32577393
Clackamas26570271
Lane23989246
Jackson20977257
Deschutes16623102
Umatilla12602125
Douglas10712188
Linn1046886
Josephine8659165
Yamhill744999
Klamath643491
Polk623570
Malheur479467
Benton461927
Coos412069
Columbia324237
Jefferson313746
Lincoln276330
Union272737
Wasco239039
Crook212338
Clatsop211725
Tillamook181523
Baker174421
Morrow167921
Curry166817
Hood River163035
Harney78916
Grant7558
Lake6768
Wallowa50811
Gilliam1374
Sherman1283
Wheeler651
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 4644566

Reported Deaths: 68019
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles144512125852
Riverside3579884804
San Diego3495814009
San Bernardino3472035506
Orange3146225354
Sacramento1503072089
Santa Clara1405641841
Fresno1358611888
Kern1358421515
Alameda1162141329
Ventura976901120
San Joaquin973871615
Contra Costa95727924
Stanislaus806991234
Tulare72969896
San Mateo52239607
San Francisco51907605
Monterey49465565
Solano44151312
Santa Barbara43112500
Sonoma39441378
Merced39370535
Placer36487364
Imperial34261755
Kings30124284
San Luis Obispo28300313
Madera21707258
Butte21307230
Shasta20683276
Santa Cruz20151211
Yolo19143239
Marin17106242
El Dorado16004127
Sutter13094153
Napa1226895
Yuba926061
Nevada847685
Humboldt829587
Tehama823784
San Benito709067
Mendocino685575
Lassen637627
Tuolumne615393
Lake603687
Amador492259
Glenn398030
Siskiyou389541
Calaveras342266
Del Norte336034
Colusa290918
Inyo166539
Mono14935
Plumas12406
Mariposa99712
Trinity72010
Modoc6278
Sierra1980
Unassigned1650
Alpine1000
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