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Florida unemployment claims stalled by clogged websites

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Posted at 10:58 AM, Apr 11, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-11 11:44:50-04

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — Claims from hundreds of thousands of people out of work because of the coronvirus have overwhelmed Florida's unemployment department.

Furloughed and laid-off workers have reported hourslong waits on the phone and entire days stuck in loops on a clogged website.

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Gov. Ron DeSantis says he's hired 2,000 additional workers to sort through claims.

And he says the Department of Economic Opportunity is working to increase its website's capacity.

Even before the virus pandemic, it could take three weeks for people to receive their first checks.

Critics say changes to the system implemented by former Gov. Rick Scott made it harder for people to apply for unemployment. Scott has dismissed the notion.