SACRAMENTO (BCN/CBS SF) -- The state's Employment Development Department launched an expanded online dashboard for unemployment claim and payment data Friday, outlining its efforts to catch up with its backlog of claims.
The dashboard includes multiple charts displaying EDD's progress in issuing unemployment payments since the COVID-19 pandemic began last year and caused a spike in unemployed workers.
More than 1 million unemployment claims were filed last March, according to the EDD. Several hundred thousand more were filed each subsequent month as the pandemic dragged on. Since March 1, 2020, nearly 21.3 million claims have been filed across the state.
That surge in unemployment claims overwhelmed the EDD at that time, creating a backlog of roughly 600,000 unfulfilled claims, according to a September report issued by a strike team Gov. Gavin Newsom assigned to analyze the agency's issues.
According to the EDD's new dashboard, the backlog still includes roughly 150,000 claims that have not been fulfilled in three weeks or more. That backlog is down by roughly 100,000 since mid-February.
"We are committed to delivering unemployment benefits to eligible Californians as quickly as possible and transparently reporting this information to the public," EDD Director Rita Saenz said in a statement.
"This dashboard generally shows information about the historic volume of unemployment claims and benefits paid since the start of the pandemic," she said.
Since January, the EDD has paid out roughly $19.5 billion in unemployment benefits. The agency has also dispersed benefits to some 9.7 million claims per week since last month.
The new dashboard, with a list defined unemployment-related terms, can be found here.
Information about filing for unemployment or other forms of insurance can be found here.
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