OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Gov. Kevin Stitt on Thursday filed to suspend the one-week waiting period for unemployment benefits.
The second amended version of Executive Order 2020-07 was filed with the Oklahoma Secretary of State’s Office. Stitt signed the seconded amended version on Thursday.
The newest version of the Executive Order states the following: “The requirement that an individual be unemployed for a waiting period of one (1) week before benefits are paid is hereby waived so long as this Order remains in effect.”
Thousands of Oklahoman’s without work due to the coronavirus pandemic are breathing a sigh of relief after the Executive Order was signed.
“I could file for unemployment for this week and that was great. When I realized I could file for unemployment, I was like really relieved,” said Danielle Mitchell, an Oklahoman without work due to the Coronavirus.
She said she is thankful for the governor’s actions to suspend the waiting period.
“What he did there was wonderful,” she said.
Mitchell is also grateful for the ability to file for unemployment during these times. She said she wasn’t aware of the ability until recently.
“That means I could get a check every week. That would really help me survive during these difficult times,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell also said because the offices are closed, it isn’t as easy to get through to operators if you are having trouble.
“You cannot find anyone to talk to; it was frustrating,” she said.
Luckily for Mitchell, her patience paid off and she was able to file.
“The main thing is just hanging in there hoping that the state will open up other avenues to help individuals,” she said.
The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission recently encouraged people to file their unemployment claims online rather than in person.
If you have a problem filing your claim online, call the OESC Service Center at the following numbers:
OKC Metro: (405) 525-1500 or outside the metro at (800) 555-1554.