Employees hoping for financial support with amid COVID-19 outbreak

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Employees are now turning to the state for financial help as closures and restrictions require restaurants to cut back on help.

Matthew Lung, a bartender, says the restaurant he works at is closed for a few weeks and is worried about how he's going to pay the bills.

"I got paid Monday. I used that to buy groceries. I get paid one more time. After that, the check ends. If this continues after two weeks, we'll be hurting," Lung said.

Lung is a father to his little girl, Nora. With an interrupted income, being a parent now becomes a challenge.

"That's how I save money, from my tips. I have to use my checks to make sure my daughter's happy and we have the essentials," Lung said.

Lung is one of the many who now plan to file for unemployment as the future seems uncertain due to COVID 19 concerns.

"This is a situation where its slammed in all at once. We're doing everything to deal with this wave of claim activity that's come in the last few days," State employment development district spokesperson, Loree Levy, said.

Officials with the Employment Development Department said its all hands on deck as they handle the number of unemployment claims coming in to their department.

They said there is eligibility for folks needing disability or unemployment insurance, and an executive order from the state may be able to help.

"The governor's executive order does waive the one week waiting period. If you are found eligible we can pay for that first week out of work, rather than that week being an unpaid period," Levy said.

All eyes are now on Washington DC as President Trump pushes Congress on aid to speed up checks for employees.

Meanwhile, Lung is hoping to get back on the job soon, but is doing what he can to support his daughter while he's out of work.

"Our hope is that the government can help with some sort of financial support in the next few months," Lung said.

Anyone needing financial help due to medical reasons or business closures can find resources of the EDD website, however, officials say the claims could take a couple of weeks to process.

For more news coverage on the coronavirus and COVID-19 go to abc30.com/coronavirus/.
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