Lavarro, legal services group, to host unemployment benefits webinar on Tuesday


Jersey City Councilman-at-Large Rolando Lavarro is teaming up with Northeast New Jersey Legal Services to host an unemployment benefits webinar next week with over one million New Jerseyans seeking financial assistance during the coronavirus pandemic.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

“It’s been over two months now that Jersey City residents have been laid off as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. With over 1.1M unemployment claims in New Jersey, Jersey City likely makes up tens of thousands,” Lavarro said in a statement.

“Many of our neighbors have turned to unemployment benefits for assistance, only to be placed on hold or met with website outages.  We hope this webinar will serve as a resource, answering some of their questions about whether they are qualified and how to apply.”

The webinar will run for about 90 minutes on Tuesday, May 19th, between 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Anyone interested in viewing the Zoom call can RSVP here.

As of May 7th, approximately seven weeks since COVID-19 hit New Jersey, 1,018,785 unemployment claims have been filed in The Garden State, by far the most ever recorded for a similar time period, according to data from the state Department of Labor.

Between March 15th and April 11, the NJ DOL processed unemployment insurance claims for 34,885 Hudson County residents.

Gov. Phil Murphy (D) and his administration have recently faced criticism for hundreds of thousands of residents being unable to file for unemployment or have yet to receive payment.

“NNJLS has seen an increase in the number of unemployment-related cases in the past month with some clients concerned about what benefits they are eligible to receive due to the impact of COVID-19, and others concerned about the long delays in the processing of their unemployment claims,” Northeast New Jersey Legal Services Deputy Director Leah Ashe.

“We are working hard to address these concerns and provide as much advice and guidance as we can during these difficult and unprecedented times for our clients.”

Beyond the webinar, NNJLS can provide advice and representation to eligible clients faced with federal and state public benefits issues: including New Jersey unemployment benefits.