Nearly another 3 million Americans filed for unemployment last week, bringing the total of coronavirus-related unemployment claims in the United States to 36.5 million.
To put that figure into perspective, the number of unemployed Americans since mid-March is just under the population of California (39 million people) and about the population of Texas (29 million) and New York (8 million) combined.
The Washington Examiner reports:
The number of workers seeking aid remains historically high but has dropped considerably from the nearly 7 million claims that were filed the week ending March 28.
Since the economy halted in mid-March to slow the spread of the coronavirus, 36.5 million workers have filed for unemployment benefits, an unprecedented figure since the federal government began tracking unemployment in the 1930s.
— Dan Bongino (@dbongino) May 14, 2020
In response to growing unemployment, House Democrats introduced the HEROES Act that would cost more than $3 trillion.
“The bill extends the $600 payment boost to unemployment benefits through January for most workers. For those receiving jobless benefits on Jan. 31, the payment would be extended through March in some cases,” the Washington Examiner adds. “The added benefit is currently scheduled to expire on July 31. Lawmakers on both sides of aisle are eyeing changes to the payment to alleviate the incentives leading some workers to choose to remain jobless.”
According to the report, the House will vote Friday on the HEROES Act. It is expected to pass with a Democratic-majority in the chamber. The bill is unlikely to clear the Republican-majority in the Senate.
The new unemployment figure comes as President Trump is continuing to call for the reopening of the country.
“Stay-at-home or shelter-in-place orders around country have been lifted in almost every state and some restrictions on businesses and public places have been eased,” CNN reports. All 50 states have announced plans to do so.
The president has encouraged states to follow Texas and Utah’s lead in opening up businesses so Americans can get back to work. Tennessee has also mostly reopened.