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Unemployment claims at an all-time low since pandemic began

According to the Georgia Department of Labor, unemployment claims are the lowest they have been since last March.

MACON, Ga. — Unemployment has been a frequent topic of discussion since the COVID-19 pandemic began, but now, there is some good news.

According to the Georgia Department of Labor, unemployment claims are the lowest they have been since last March.

Natalie McGinty was excited to begin her new job last March, not knowing that the pandemic would change everything. 

Two weeks after she started her job, Georgia went on lockdown.

"In May, due to many reasons COVID-related, on their end and mine, it just wasn't going to work out anymore," McGinty said

McGinty says she had to act fast because having no source of income was not an option. 

She applied for unemployment.

"I was able to get unemployment, which I was very thankful to get, and I started working for a restaurant, so if I was not able to make that $300 cap that they put on unemployment, I was still able to receive it," McGinty said.

McGinty says she was receiving unemployment for nine months and, in the meantime, she was still looking for a full-time job.

"Every time I opened Indeed or Glassdoor, I had to mentally and emotionally prepare myself," McGinty said.

McGinty says she ran into a lot of "work-from-home scams" and jobs that were not promising.

"The last 9 to 10 months were scary and a struggle, and the amount that I was approved in unemployment was about to run out. I was scared and terrified," she said.

After months of job searching and relying on unemployment...

"Finally, a few friends of mine who worked at Progressive came to me and said, "Hey, I think with your skill sets and your education, you'd be a really great fit," McGinty said.

She got the job.

"Today, I got my first paycheck from my new job that I started a few weeks ago. I paid all of my bills -- like, easily -- and I was so incredibly thankful. I was on the verge of tears because it's been so hard," she said.

McGinty says hearing that unemployment claims are the lowest they've been since the pandemic, makes her hopeful that a lot of people will no longer have to rely on unemployment in the future. 

    

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