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Issues persist with antiquated Virginia unemployment system

Virginians across the state continue to report that it’s nearly impossible to reach anyone with the Virginia Employment Commission by phone.

RICHMOND, Va. — More than two months after the coronavirus pandemic started forcing Virginia businesses to slash their workforces, the state’s unemployment system still can’t keep up with the deluge of calls and emails from laid-off workers who need help. 

Virginians across the state continue to report that it’s nearly impossible to reach anyone with the Virginia Employment Commission by phone. People instead have turned to social media, legal aid centers or their elected officials for help troubleshooting. 

Virginia Employment Commission spokeswoman Joyce Fogg acknowledged problems with the phone lines and said the agency has done its best to add staff to accommodate the unprecedented demand.

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