S.C. Sees Unemployment Claims Decline

Staff Report

Friday, July 31st, 2020

Initial Claims: For claim week ending July 25, 2020, the number of South Carolinians who filed their initial claim for unemployment insurance benefits is 12,194, a decrease of 2,152 initial claims from the week prior. This brings the initial claims total to 697,619 received since mid-March.

“For the first time since the pandemic emerged in South Carolina, our initial claims numbers have dropped below 13,000. Our economy is gaining traction as business owners re-open with strict safety protocols, recall their workforces and recruit new employees. We are strongly encouraged by this downward trend in initial claims and the performance of the economy,” states executive director, Dan Ellzey.

“It is important for all people receiving South Carolina unemployment benefits to understand that they will receive their last payment of the weekly FPUC $600 this week. We recognize, however, that debate is taking place at this time in Washington over a possible extension of federal unemployment benefits. If there is no agreement, these payments will not be restarted. If there is agreement, it could take a while to implement a different federal program developed by Congress depending on the complexity of the changes. It is just not a matter of stopping and then re-starting the program,” continued Ellzey.

“We encourage everyone who is able and available to rejoin the workforce to contact their local SC Works center at SCWorks.org. Our SC Works partners are actively helping individuals move from unemployment to employment. We are proud of the work they’re doing to help South Carolinians’ regain their footing. Centers are offering free weekly virtual workshops, training opportunities and connections to hot jobs to be filled right now. In addition, our centers are working with employers who are looking for job applicants. We have a direct email program notifying people in geographic areas and with certain prior experience of new job opportunities. In addition, we are conducting drive thru job fairs which allow job applicants and employers to take applications and interview in an open air and social distanced environment. All you have to do is contact a SC Works Center near you,” concluded Ellzey.

Agency Responsiveness:

 From March 15, 2020 to July 28, 2020, the agency has paid more than $3.6 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, the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (extension of benefits for 13 weeks) program and Extended Benefits (Additional 16 weeks of benefits after PEUC).

Call center hours (1-866-831-1724)

Monday-Friday 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. Saturday 8 a.m. - NOON