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Governor Whitmer Statement on Unemployment Numbers During the COVID-19 Pandemic


May 20, 2020 

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Governor Whitmer Statement on Unemployment Numbers During the COVID-19 Pandemic 

Governor highlights urgent need for additional federal assistance 


LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer released the following statement after the Department of Technology, Management, and Budget released Michigan’s April unemployment numbers, when the state had reached a peak number of positive cases of COVID-19. 


“We are going through an unprecedented crisis, unlike anything we’ve seen in our lifetime,” said Governor Whitmer. This virus has devastated families across the state and put hardworking Michiganders out of a job for months. I will continue working around the clock to ensure everyone who qualifies for unemployment benefits receives them during this time. But this isn’t just a problem in Michigan. Families across the country need help. We’re counting on the federal government to work together to provide additional flexibility and aid for states like Michigan to continue supporting essential services like health care, education, and police and fire departments. We will get through this together.” 


From the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, Governor Whitmer and her administration have worked around the clock to ensure benefits for Michiganders who have lost work because of the virus. Governor Whitmer has been recognized nationally for her efforts to ensure unemployed Michiganders have access to benefits during the ongoing public health crisis.


Michigan has provided nearly 1.4 million unemployed Michigan workers more than $5.62 billion in benefits. Latest numbers show that 92% of eligible claimants have received benefits or have been approved to receive benefits. 


Under the governor’s leadership, Michigan was one of the first states to begin issuing the additional $600 pandemic benefit from the U.S. government.