Tennesseans filed nearly 44,000 unemployment claims between April 18 of this year through April 25 because of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to numbers the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development released Thursday.
As of Thursday, and in total, more than 300,000 Tennesseans are on record for filing unemployment claims since mid-March, when the virus hit the United States, the TDLWD’s website reported.
The TDLWD on Thursday reported the following number of unemployment claims, by region:
• Greater Memphis: 8,215
• Northwest Tennessee: 1,105
• Southwest Tennessee: 1,480
• Northern Middle Tennessee: 14,927
• Southern Middle Tennessee: 3,251
• Upper Cumberland: 1,510
• Southeast Tennessee: 5,018
• East Tennessee: 9,290
• Northeast Tennessee: 2,379
• West Tennessee Mobile American Job Center: 14
• Middle Tennessee Mobile American Job Center: 147
• East Tennessee Mobile America Job Center: 15
As The Tennessee Star reported last month, residents in Northern Middle Tennessee and East Tennessee have likely filed high numbers of claims because of their respective hospitality industries.
If tourists may not travel to those areas then, of course, Tennessee’s hospitality industry cannot thrive.
“There is no way to know for certain why these areas of Tennessee have seen more unemployment than others. But, Nashville sits in the Northern Middle Tennessee region and the Smoky Mountains are part of the East Tennessee region,” TDLWD spokesman Chris Cannon told The Star last month.
“These locations are home to a majority of the state’s hospitality industry. This industry has been one of the hardest hit by the COVID-19 health emergency in our state.”
Also, as reported, TDLWD officials did not see an unprecedented increase in unemployment claims until the third and fourth weeks of March. The statewide unemployment rate for April 2020 will come out on May 21, 2020, at 1:30 p.m. Central Time, TDLWD officials said.
TDLWD officials said the state of Tennessee has started paying approved unemployment claimants their first installment of the $600 Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) benefit, in addition to their Tennessee Unemployment Compensation (TUC) benefit.
On April 14 the state distributed benefit payments of close to $94 million to financial institutions for approximately 110,000 unemployed Tennesseans.
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