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Florida unemployment rate triples in April to nearly 13 percent

Florida Unemployment

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (CAP NEWS SERVICES) – Florida’s unemployment is now officially 12.9 percent for April, slightly lower than the national average, but nearly a hundred people who sought unemployment benefits are monitoring their credit after sensitive information was left unprotected.

The state’s unemployment rate skyrocketed to 12.9 percent in April from 4.3 percent in March and from 2.8 percent in February. About 1.2 million Floridians lost their jobs seemingly overnight. 

Florida lost 893,000 jobs in April and a total of 989,600 since the first of the year that’s lower than the number of people who have applied for unemployment.

Thursday’s numbers show just over a million eligible claims have been processed, while 366,000 have been denied.

“We knew it would be significant,” said Governor Ron DeSantis.

In Jacksonville, Governor DeSantis told reporters the number would likely have been higher if he had a heavier touch closing the state.

“And one of the reasons why I wanted to do a safe, smart, step by step approach to recovery is that if we can get people back to work. Get some confidence back in the communities, you’ll start to see, hopefully, a lot of these jobs be recovered,” said DeSantis.

The highest unemployment in the state is in the Orlando area.


Feeling failed by the unemployment system? 8 On Your Side is putting together a list of names of people waiting for their benefits to send to Gov. DeSantis and the DEO.

If you have been waiting for 30 days or more on unemployment benefits, please fill out this Google form. 8 On Your Side’s Victoria Price will be delivering it to the governor.


The numbers were released a day after we learned 98 Floridians got a letter telling them their names and social security numbers were inadvertently sent to an unsecured server.

No banking information was released and it is not the first time data has been compromised.

On November 5, 2013, as the current system was launching, we reported the first data breach.

“Something in the computer system was encoded incorrectly and resulted in an inadvertent disclosure,” said former DEO Executive Director Jesse Panuccio at the time.

As it did in 2013, the state is paying for a year’s worth of credit monitoring and data protection.

What we don’t know is if there have been more disclosures. We have asked for the information and have not gotten a response.

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