Unemployed residents are complaining of clogged phone lines and outdated technology at the Employment Development Department (EDD) despite Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) promising to increase staffing among other reforms.
"I have done just about everything I know how to do as a public official to make things work, but my colleagues, my staff, my constituents and I are at our wits' end," said state Assemblymember David Chiu (D-San Francisco) in a tweet.
"I know people who are on hold every day and can't get a response," said San Francisco resident Armand Domalewski, a workforce development expert who co-created a Facebook group for unemployed residents.
The mounting claims arrive as some county and state government agencies are again moving to shut down an array of business activities as fears escalate that the coronavirus outbreak might intensify — a collective decision that could cause additional workers to lose their jobs.
"I'm terribly disappointed. The EDD has let us down terribly," said Rhonda Dias, a San Jose resident and daycare teacher. Dias was temporarily laid off and later returned to her job, but at reduced hours. "The website doesn't work and you can't get through on the phone. People have to pay their taxes. Then they can't help us."