DEW eases requirements as SC unemployment claims rise

As state officials look to ease the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic, which has led to closures and cancellations across South Carolina, the state Department of Employment and Workforce is making it easier for workers who lost their job to collect benefits.

The agency is waiving the work search and one-week waiting period requirements for everyone who has lost their jobs as a result of COVID-19. This applies to claims filed from this past Monday through April 18.

This comes as the department is handling a jump in claims. The agency reported a 400% increase in filings this week and received more than 4,000 phone calls on Wednesday alone.

“We ask for the public’s patience as we continue to respond,” Employment and Workforce Executive Director Dan Ellzey said in a released statement.

In an attempt to help businesses, the department is postponing first-quarter payments from employers until June 1. They must still file wage reports on April 30.

For information about unemployment insurance benefits related to COVID-19, visit dew.sc.gov/covid-hub.

COVID-19

LATEST DEVELOPMENTS

State health officials announced Saturday they inadvertently left 154 cases of COVID-19 out of Saturday's number, meaning the day saw 420 new cases — the highest daily tally to date.

State health officials reported 266 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday and four additional deaths from the respiratory virus.

Children’s summer reading through the Greenwood County Library system is launching Monday via story times, puppet shows and games, all online, along with virtual learning resources and a digital library, during the novel coronavirus pandemic.

To safely welcome employees, students and visitors back on campus during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Piedmont Technical College will be implementing a phased return-to-campus plan beginning Monday.

People in the Abbeville area will have the chance to get tested for COVID-19 for free, courtesy of an upcoming Abbeville Area Medical Center mobile testing event.

South Carolina added 331 new cases of COVID-19 — the highest single-day number of new cases to date — and reported 13 more deaths associated with the respiratory virus.

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

As the Lakelands and the country respond to the novel coronavirus pandemic, which has led to state and national emergency declarations, it is vital for everyone to have up-to-date information about the virus and its spread. As such, we're providing free access to all of our COVID-19 coverage, which is available on this page.

Here's the latest information on COVID-19 from health agencies and hospitals: