Alabama Department of Labor

The number of initial unemployment claims dropped across Alabama, according to the latest release from the state’s labor department.

Thursday, the Alabama Department of Labor released its weekly count for initial unemployment claims.

Statewide, there were 19,950 initial claims filed either online or by telephone during the week of May 31 to June 6, 2020. Of those initial claims, the department’s release stated that 12,377 were related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Over the same week, most of those initial claims – 6,461 – did not have a specified industry available. But, there were 2,027 initial claims filed under administrative and support services; 1,660 filed under food service and drinking places; 857 filed under transportation equipment manufacturing; 584 filed under general merchandise stores; and 491 filed under education services.

Jefferson County had the largest number of claims with 2,977.

Wiregrass counties – Barbour, Coffee, Covington, Dale, Geneva, Henry, Houston and Pike – had a total of 1,104 initial claims filed from May 31 to June 6. Houston County had the highest number with 391.

Since pandemic closures began in March, the Wiregrass had its highest number of initial claims the week of April 25 with 3,799.

The new statewide numbers are lower than the week ending May 30 when 21,335 initial claims were filed. The number of initial unemployment claims has been on a downward trend since Alabama businesses began reopening in May and have consistently stayed below 30,000 since May 2.

Alabama issued its first public health orders regarding the coronavirus illness in March. Initial unemployment claims for the week of March 14 were 1,824. The number of initial claims hit its highest point the week of April 4 with 106,739 claims filed.

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