Florida’s unemployment drive-through

People queue in their vehicles to collect unemployment forms in the town of Hialeah, Florida, on Wednesday, April 8, 2020.
People queue in their vehicles to collect unemployment forms in the town of Hialeah, Florida, on Wednesday, April 8, 2020. © AFP / FRANCE 24

A town in Florida has turned to drive-throughs to deal with a surge in unemployment claims blamed on the coronavirus pandemic, allowing residents to collect benefit claim forms without leaving their vehicles. It comes amid a massive rise in the number of jobless across the United States.

Advertising

The town of Hialeah opened four drive-through locations Wednesday, after a huge rise in applicants caused the state’s unemployment website to crash.

Florida has seen more than 520,000 apply for unemployment since March 15, according to local media.

“As you can see the lines are going around the corners, and what this shows is the incredible need that we have here in our community and probably the whole state,” Hialeah mayor Carlos Hernandez told AFP. “Because many of these people have been out of work for weeks now and they have not been able to get through the state unemployment system.”

The coronavirus pandemic has caused many businesses to fold amid a huge increase in unemployment across the United States.

A record 6.6 million Americans filed for unemployment in the last week of March alone, a rise of more than 3,000% since the start of the month.

Daily newsletterReceive essential international news every morning