‘You call and can’t speak to anybody’ Former oilfield worker frustrated with Louisiana’s unemployment woes

State News

NEW IBERIA, La. (KLFY) A New Iberia resident needs help understanding his unemployment benefits.

Kermit Dixon explains that it’s discouraging to call the unemployment office and no one answers.

Dixon says he’s s a former oil field worker who was laid off in March.

He adds that he received unemployment and was told he’s entitled to more.

“I got laid off when the COVID hit and have not been able to return so far because of the work scope and everything,” Dixon added. “Im a mechanic out there.”

Dixon says he not alone.

There are others frustrated with calling unemployment offices and an automated recorder handles your urgent business.

“I’ve been calling since 7:30 this morning and they don’t take calls until 8. So at 7:59 a.m., I make another call and still can’t get into their system. The system kicks you out,” Dixon said.

He noted he provided information that was requested including a selfie for identification purposes.

“I provided those things and can’t get an answer from them as to what decision that they have made because you can’t speak to anybody. That’s the frustration.”

Dixon says it’s painful to work and pay taxes only to be put on hold as though your needs aren’t urgent.

And now, Dixon pleads with local and state leaders to help those struggling to get answers during these difficult times.

“As Louisianans, we’ve given our livelihood and put in our tax dollars and worked hard here, well why can’t we receive the same services that we rendered to them to be where they are,” Dixon explained.

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