DENVER (CBS4)– The Colorado Department of Labor and Unemployment is working to fix a program that’s stopping thousands of unemployed from receiving Lost Wage Assistance. However, some tell us they are also still dealing with initial unemployment filing issues.
“I’ve been rationing my food for a while, I’ve tried to put off as many bills as possible,” Victoria Gonyier said.
Gonyier was furloughed from her job in hospitality in March, then she found out she was recently let go.
“So when I had separated from a job it put my unemployment back into pending approval, but the issue says I turned down a job offer,” she explained.
However, she told CBS4 she was merely trying to update her status. Now she is no longer receiving unemployment benefits as of the first week of September. Trying to relay this to the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment has not been easy.
“I know the issue was the system was overloaded with applicants and in trying to fix that with doing everything through a virtual assistant, they took out the humanity of it all,” she said.
Gonyier thinks the automation of the program has made it even more difficult to get her issue resolved. The department told CBS4 the virtual agent experience had more volume than they expected within a short window, so the company had to reboot it on Tuesday. As of this Wednesday morning, the virtual assistant portion still works, but the certification part does not. This has left many users confused, including Gonyier, who says she was not able to certify for LWA either.
“I’m not sure what happened to all these people who were answering the phone, I guess they’re all doing call backs now.”
The automated system generated a call back for Gonyier to get help, the problem is, she has to wait until November. Some users have already reported they didn’t even get a call back on their scheduled date.
“You know it doesn’t give me any security that I’m going to get any money anytime soon,” she added.
CLDE also reiterated, that these technical difficulties will not impact people’s ability to receive their benefits.
CBS4 will check back with CDLE to find out when the filing system is all up to date and bring you the latest.