New DC site aims to provide user-friendly unemployment resources

D.C. has launched a revamped unemployment website aimed at making the process of navigating its services more user-friendly, as changes to federal pandemic assistance programs loom.

The new unemployment.dc.gov features updated menus, more convenient navigation and new content, according to a news release from the D.C. Department of Employment Services.

There have also been improvements to the portal for filing claims, dcnetworks.org.

Visitors to the site will have mobile access as well as a new live chat feature to communicate directly with DOES staff. Support will be available in English and Spanish.

Officials said the goal is to reduce barriers as new policies that could affect how people file for unemployment are implemented.

One of the major changes on the horizon in federal and District law is the return of work search requirements beginning Aug. 30. Claimants will be required to complete at least two work search activities each week they apply for benefits, and will have to register with the American Job Center.

On Sept. 4, federal pandemic unemployment assistance programs are set to expire.

“As economic first responders, it is our job to make sure D.C. workers and employers are able to find answers to their questions quickly and easily,” said Dr. Unique Morris-Hughes, DOES director.

The upgrades are part of Mayor Muriel Bowser’s $11 million investment into DOES. So far, more than 100,000 people in the District have received unemployment benefits.

Melissa Howell

Melissa Howell joined WTOP Radio in March 2018 and is excited to cover stories that matter across D.C., as well as in Maryland and Virginia. 

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