BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — California’s Employment Development Department has had thousand upon thousands of unemployment claims throughout the COVID pandemic. But with these claims came a backlog of delayed payments, fraud, and phone lines with wait times lasting all day or even longer.
17 News spoke with a woman who fell through the EDD cracks months ago. Now we went back to see how this woman is doing after getting help from a state Senator.
Some people have waited patiently for months to get their unemployment checks. They’ve spent days on the phone to talk to a human and not a robot about their EDD situations.
The cycle repeats again and again.
But Amy Callagy, got out of this cycle when State Senator Shannon Grove’s office did what no else could do. They got her months of money she was owed.
“They owed me right around 7,000 dollars,” Aimee Callagy said. “So they can get you, it can be 100 dollars, it could be 10,000 dollars. They’re going to help you get your money.”
Callagy was owed thousands from EDD.
She was an accountant and because of her health condition had to stop working because of the pandemic. She says she was at the brink of not being able to pay her rent or car payment. Risking both her home and her car.
Senator Shannon Grove’s office took Callagy under their wing with hundreds of other Kern residents needing help with their EDD claims.
“We’re handling about 400 claims and we try to get them processed before we pick up additional claims,” Sen. Shannon Grove said.
Callagy said she hasn’t lost her home or her car. She was even able to pay her car insurance one day before they were going to cancel on her.
“It felt like the world had been lifted off my shoulders,” Callagy said. “I was literally down to 38 cents in my bank account. It is such a relief. I paid my bills and now I’ve been looking for work.”
If you are still waiting or struggling to get your owed unemployment income it’s recommended to reach out to your state senator’s office for help.
If you’re also experiencing EDD issues look below for your Bakersfield district state senator’s contact information.
Sen. Shannon Grove District 16:
Website – https://grove.cssrc.us/
Bakersfield district phone – 661-323-0443
Sen. Melissa Hurtado District 14:
Website – https://sd14.senate.ca.gov/
Bakersfield district phone – 661-395-2620