Making it in the Mid-South: laid-off worker waits almost 2 months for unemployment payments

WATCH: Making it in the Mid-South: laid-off worker waits almost 2 months for unemployment payments

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — After the coronavirus pandemic hit the Mid-South, many people turned to the unemployment office for help getting through.

Many of the people who needed the checks had to wait weeks, some months to receive their unemployment payments.

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Jamila Ransom was laid off from FedEx in April and applied for unemployment shortly after but still hasn’t received anything.

Ransom became emotional when she began to think about how to pay the mortgage, light bill and her daughter’s housing application fee for college.

“Lemoyne Owen College called me yesterday was talking about her housing application fee that’s 215 dollars,” said Ransom. “How am I supposed to afford that?”

Like many people we hear from, Ransom had a hard time getting someone from the state to answer questions.

“They’re giving you this answering machine that tells you to leave your information and then once you leave your information, they never return your call,” Ransom said.

FOX13 called the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development about Ransom’s claim.

A spokesperson said Ransom had wages from Mississippi. They were waiting on wages from the Magnolia state so they can combine them with Tennessee.

They said when filing, Ransom answered that she only worked in one state.

“They’re thinking because everybody is opening up everything that everybody is back to work,” Ransom said. “Everything is going back smoothly, no it’s not, people are still going through the same thing that we’ve been going through since day one and it’s hard.”

Ransom is expected to receive payments in 48 to 72 hours.

Because she was laid off, she had trouble providing the necessities for her family which includes her daughter and her elderly father.

Ransom found out about the Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer program.

WATCH: Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer Program helps families who receive free or reduced meals at school

This program helps families who receive free and reduced lunch and can provide nearly $250 per child over the next few months.

That’s nearly $6 per child per day.

Families who qualify will receive financial assistance in installments to replace the meals from March, April and May.

“That will be great,” she said. “That’s the least worry that we will have to have on our brain of what are we going to feed our kids tonight.”

If you already depend on SNAP assistance or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, you do not need to apply.

To apply for the program click here.

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