The pandemic has been in our lives going on six months now, and people in Michigan who have lost their employment are still trying to collect unemployment funds. We have reported on this a few times already, and the news is still not good. Yes, they have paid out 22 billion dollars in benefits to 2.1 million workers, but they say there are fewer than 42,000 still unpaid workers at this time. But that is still a lot of people who are in dire need of an income.

WILX Reports “It’s the most frustrating thing I’ve dealt with in a very long time,” said Shana Newsome. Newsome has tried filing for unemployment since March, but she said she cannot properly file a claim because someone stole her Social Security number. “I was shocked. I was actually in the store shopping and I dropped my stuff on the ground because everything horrible just went through my mind,” she said. Newsome said someone used her social security number to file a fake claim, so the system will not let her file a legit claim.

300,000 potential fraudulent claims have been investigated, the Governor said “that’s the reason why people like Newsome can’t get help in the local office.” Newsome said the error was found in the spring, and it was not until Tuesday when someone in the UIA’s fraud department was given her case. She says she is lost faith in the system. “It’s something different every time I call. It is going to be a week and we will have it fixed. I found out about the fraud thing about five months ago. I get all the promises to call back. Nothing,” said Newsome. Today UIA Director Steve Gray will appear before the Joint Select Committee on the Covid-19 pandemic. The Michigan Unemployment Trust Fund is still in surprisingly decent shape boasting 1.5 million dollars, but in the event, it runs out the state could borrow money from the federal government, interest free.

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