Unemployment claims in Malheur County jump – surprising no one

The chart from the Oregon Employment Department tracks claims for unemployment filed by Malheur County workers in recent weeks. The numbers are expected to continue climbing.

The number of Malheur County workers seeking unemployment benefits has climbed rapidly as the impact of the global pandemic spreads through the local economy.

For the week ending March 28, the state processed 129 claims from unemployed workers in the county. The week before, 61 claims were processed.

Of the most recent week, 45 claims were filed by those who worked in the hospitality industry, the biggest hit of any economic sector in the county. Health care and social service workers posted 38 claims.

Many area restaurants in the county have closed or gone to reduced hours since an order from Gov. Kate Brown forbid seated service.