Tennessee unemployment claims on the rise as extra $600 in benefits is set to expire

WATCH: Tennessee unemployment claims on the rise as extra $600 in benefits is set to expire

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Nearly 26,000 people filed new unemployment claims in Tennessee last week. That’s up more than 3,000 from the previous week.

FOX13 spoke with a man who said he wants the federal government to extend the extra $600 unemployment benefits that thousands of Tennesseans now depend on.

Dushun Taylor reached out to FOX13 last month when he was waiting for his unemployment benefits for more than six weeks.

Content Continues Below

Have questions about the spread of coronavirus? We have an entire section dedicated to coverage of the outbreak. CLICK HERE for more.

As soon as FOX13 called the state of Tennessee to find out why it was taking so long to get his unemployment check, Taylor got it the next day.

Taylor is thankful to have his unemployment benefits after waiting for several weeks but knows that money will run out soon. He said he fears for those who are still out of work.

“It was very refreshing because I had a lot of bills that was past due and just everyday living and thankfully once the story aired, the next following day they actually approved me for all the back pay,” Taylor said.

That was late June when FOX13 first introduced viewers to Taylor. Now he’s urging the federal government to extend the $600 weekly unemployment boost as new jobless claims rise across the country.

“You have mortgages, you have kids, and it’s hard for a family to live off of $200 or $300 dollars a week,” said Taylor.

Taylor joins millions of Americans who are still unemployed. He told FOX13 he fears losing his home, car and other basic necessitates if he doesn’t get back to work soon. Taylor said he applies for jobs every day but can’t seem to land back on his feet.

“Now it’s time to be concerned about the citizens and the hard work of taxpayers that’s trying to work but can’t work, so I think that they should extend it, especially as we’re in the second wave of this pandemic,” he said.

Reports indicate that 25 million Americans are set to lose their enhanced benefit at the end of this week.

This comes as more and more companies are hesitant to re-open.

For the latest on coronavirus, stream FOX13 News on FOX13 Memphis Now – it’s free on your Roku, Amazon Fire or Apple TV as well as your FOX13 News App. You can also follow FOX13 on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.