Unemployment claimant shares frustrations, simply wants a final answer


LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — As we close to the year mark of the beginning of the pandemic, there are nonetheless individuals on the market who’ve been ready for unemployment advantages. Some began to file when the pandemic started, others over the previous year.

One man, who simply wants a final answer to his declare, shared his story with us.

“I used to fitness train; I was going in the right direction,” mentioned Devin Whitmore.

Before the pandemic, he was in the course of making an attempt to show his life round. Whitmore was incarcerated at one level of his life however says he was again at work final winter.

“I am 56-years-old; I have worked all my life,” he mentioned.

Whitmore defined because the virus turned a actuality in Nevada, his job on the Westgate stopped.

“I have lost everything,” he lamented. “I lost all my clothes. I have moved, lived with people, couch surfed, this and that.”

He confirmed us his portal on-line and the roughly $9,000 in funds he believes he’s owed. He says the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation (DETR) despatched him a few determinations, relating to his declare.

“First, they send you one that you are not eligible and to apply for UI, and then, UI tells you you are not eligible,” he shared. “And then, DETR sends you a ‘you are eligible,’ and then, I have heard that on the phone from the customer service.”

Right now, Whitmore is interesting the denial he says he was despatched as a result of he was advised he was eligible. He says he wants to work, however latest well being points, together with a surgical procedure for pancreatic most cancers, do not make it straightforward.

“It is not just me. It is times, times, times way more people than just me that are going through what I went through,” he mentioned.

There are lots of of others on the market who’ve been ready for an answer. Some are referred to as “first time filers.”

“There are still people that are stuck in these situations that filed at the beginning of the pandemic, or that were at one point, determined and are now in an appeal status,” mentioned Amber Hansen, the administrator of a widespread Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) assist Facebook web page. “Or, there is a large group of people that have not heard anything in the last 11 months.”

Hansen’s group has properly over 10,000 energetic members. She additionally has sources inside the division.

A latest put up on Hansen’s web page about unresolved claims reveals simply how many individuals are on this boat.

“There has been groups that just get lost because of glitches, and then they kind of just sit there,” she defined. “And then there, from what I was told, no way for them to go back and filter through these people, and that they have had to spend a majority of the time, or what they are trying to do is weed out the fraudulent claims or ones that are not valid, to get to those people.”

The Strike Force serving to DETR hoped to have the backlog tackled in February.

“If I am ineligible, I am ineligible. They should have told me a long time ago,” mentioned Whitmore.

He says he doesn’t wish to simply overlook in regards to the doable 1000’s of {dollars} he believes he’s owed.

“For people out there, just continue, continue to do what you do. Pursue what is yours,” Whitmore inspired.

8 News Now did attain out to DETR, relating to the backlog of claims they mentioned they had been engaged on final month. We have but to get an replace on the quantity of people that have had claims resolved since then.