BALTIMORE (WJZ) — An unexpected change in Maryland’s unemployment system on Sunday left many Marylanders frustrated while trying to submit their weekly claims.
Thousands of Marylanders were unable to file for benefits under the state’s BEACON 2.0 system. The issues began early Sunday morning. WJZ received several calls from viewers expressing their frustrations and concerns with the system. Many said they were receiving the same message on the site — “There are no weeks available for certification.”READ MORE: Unemployed Workers Blasts Gov. Hogan's Decision To End Additional Federal Benefits
Shortly before 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, the Department of Labor sent out a tweet addressing the issue:
If you are an unemployment insurance claimant and are not able to file your weekly claim certification this week, please check your BEACON portal to see if you have an “Apply for Benefits” button as pictured below. pic.twitter.com/pHbZnZCvOs
— MD Department of Labor (@MD_Labor) June 6, 2021
The Department of Labor later released a statement::READ MORE: Gov. Hogan Defends Decision To End Federal Unemployment Benefits
Unemployment insurance claimants who are not able to fill out their weekly claim certification this week should check their BEACON portal to see if they have an “Apply for Benefits” button. If they do, the claimant will need to complete this action in order to file their weekly claim certification as required by law and federal program rules.
Please note that claimants have through the end of the day on Saturday, June 12 to file their weekly certification. Many claimants have already successfully filed their weekly claim certifications.
There are no issues with the BEACON system. The federal unemployment insurance programs have not ended and will continue until July 3 in Maryland. If claimants are waiting to receive an eligibility determination for any federal programs, the Division will ensure that they receive all payments owed to them for all weeks prior to July 3 that they are determined eligible for.
The unemployment topic has been trending this week in Maryland after Gov. Hogan announced that the additional $300 in federal aid will be ending in less than in a month. Many have blasted the governor’s decision and are urging him to reconsider before the July 3 expiration.
However, Hogan defended his decision by saying:
“While these federal programs provided important temporary relief, vaccines and jobs are now in good supply. And we have a critical problem where businesses across our state are trying to hire more people, but many are facing severe worker shortages. After 12 consecutive months of job growth, we look forward to getting more Marylanders back to work.”MORE NEWS: Maryland To End Extra $300 In Unemployment Benefits To End July 3
The Maryland Workforce Exchange lists 221,369 current job openings, as of June 2. April 2021 figures show 181,434 Marylanders were unemployed, according to the Department of Labor.