SC Dept. of Employment and Workforce reports more than 16K filed unemployment claims last week

South Carolina News

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – South Carolina initial unemployment insurance claims saw a slight decrease in weekly unemployment claims across the state, according to data from the SC Department of Employment and Workforce.

It comes after a spike in unemployment claims last week.

The advance numbers for the week ending July 4th totaled 16,062, a decrease of 897 compared to the previous week’s count of 16,959.

This data means 16,062 people who live and work in the state filed an initial claim last week.

“We are now approaching a big financial shift nationwide as the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) program is set to expire on Saturday, July 25. According to the CARES Act, the FPUC expiration date depends on how each state defines its benefit week. In South Carolina, our claim week runs Sunday-Saturday, setting Saturday, July 25 as the last day the weekly $600 FPUC benefit can be disbursed in the state. With that being said, many South Carolina businesses are eagerly looking for workers. They have created safe, healthy and, in many instances, virtual workplaces,” says Employment and Workforce Executive Director, Dan Ellzey.

“If the FPUC program expires as expected, individuals need to be prepared for this change and aware of the many reemployment services available through the SC Works centers across the state. While some of the SC Works centers have offered reemployment services online and over the phone throughout the pandemic, many of these centers have reopened their facilities to the public. We urge you to visit https://scworks.org/about-us/statewide-centers to see which facilities are open and to understand their visitation protocols. Your safety and the safety of SC Works employees are top priority, so if you don’t feel comfortable visiting in person, know that SC Works staff will be happy to help you with reemployment services over the phone. Many SC Works centers are now offering virtual job fairs and others are planning drive-through job fair opportunities that allow individuals to apply and sometimes interview for a job while safely social distancing in their vehicle,” continued Ellzey. 

Since March 15, 2020, the agency has paid more than $2.9 billion in a combination of South Carolina UI benefits, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (for the self-employed and others), the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation ($600 per week) program and the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (extension of benefits for 13 weeks) program.

“If you haven’t explored the SC Works Online System (SCWOS), check out our tutorial on how to search for available jobs near you by going to the SCDEW YouTube page and viewing the SCWOS Job Portal Tutorial,” said Ellzey.

Lowcountry breakdown:

Charleston County: 1,179 claims

Berkeley County: 721 claims

Dorchester County: 528 claims

Colleton County: 182 claims

Georgetown County: 242 claims

Williamsburg County: 133 claims

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