By Erin Hassanzadeh


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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota is dealing right now with a huge surge in unemployment applications.

More than 270,000 Minnesotans have applied since March 16. More than 17,000 applied Tuesday alone.

The process hasn’t been easy for everyone. WCCO talked to families who are still waiting to hear when, and if, help will arrive.

Ashley Boeshans, a baker at Sugar and Spice Sweetery in Maple Grove, is in limbo right now.

“I have no confirmations. I have no denials. I don’t know what’s happening,” Boeshans said. “I can log into my account, but there’s no information available”

She applied for unemployment two weeks ago after her hours were cut, but the mother of four can’t wait much longer for an answer.

“We were able to fall back a little bit on savings, but it’s not going to get us through the next month,” Boeshans said.

Sharri Linderman, a self-employed stylist, was unsuccessful applying for unemployment online.

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“I was supposed to open up today,” Linderman said. “When I applied it, came up with zeros.”

Like many, Linderman has been unable to get help over the phone.

“There’s a really, really long wait,” Linderman said. “There’s a couple times I haven’t gotten through either.”

Kimberly Tabolich’s 72-year-old mother works full time at a Goodwill, but found out Tuesday she won’t receive full unemployment benefits because she receives Social Security.

“She called me yesterday, and she was extremely upset, crying, and explaining that she’s not going to be able to make her mortgage payment. She doesn’t know what she’s going to do,” Tabolich said. “So between the unemployment at 60% and her Social Security … when I talked to her today, [she is] $78 short of making her mortgage.”

It is proof that even if the online application goes through, all problems are not solved.

“We’re all going to have to chip in. I don’t see what choice we have,” she said.

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, or DEED, added 75 more people to handle calls, but they’ve had more applications in the last 2.5 weeks than all of last year, and they ask that people apply online. There is more helpful unemployment information on DEED’s website.

Erin Hassanzadeh

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