INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — About 57,000 more people applied for unemployment benefits in Indiana last week as the state continues to see record numbers of newly jobless people stemming from the coronavirus economic slowdown.
Federal statistics released Thursday show Indiana has had nearly 570,000 people seek jobless aid over the past six weeks. That growth in the unemployed since March 15 is more than five times greater than Indiana’s total of about 105,000 people seeking jobs in February.
More than 30 million people across the country have now filed for unemployment since coronavirus closures started and economists have forecast that the national unemployment rate for April could go as high as 20%.
Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb has said he would announce changes Friday to the statewide stay-at-home order that has been in effect since March 25. Holcomb’s decisions are coming as health officials reported Indiana now has more than 1,000 people who have died with confirmed or likely coronavirus infections since the outbreak hit the state early last month.
But Indianapolis officials announced Thursday the city’s state-at-home order will continue until at least May 15, including a ban on dine-in service at restaurants and the closure of nonessential businesses such as movie theaters, fitness centers and hair salons.
“The challenges we face here in Indianapolis are unique — a city filled with large venues, densely populated neighborhoods, and active business centers,” Mayor Joe Hogsett said. “To ensure that we see continued progress in our fight against this virus, we must recommit to our social distancing efforts even as we plan for the future.”