New Mexico prepares strategies for helping the unemployed

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A maintenance worker power-washes the state seal at an entrance of the capitol building on Monday, Aug. 24, 2020, in Santa Fe, New Mexico. The building has been closed to the public since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. Legislative meetings and gubernatorial addresses are broadcast online. (AP Photo/Cedar Attanasio)

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Six times as many people filed for unemployment insurance in July compared with the worst phase of the Great Recession in 2009.

A report Wednesday from the accountability office of the Legislature shows that New Mexico unemployment claims hit a peak of 32,800 in June 2009.

Last month, New Mexico residents filed 197,000 claims.

The hospitality industry including hotels and restaurants has been hardest hit by the new economic crisis judging from unemployment claims.

The analysis by the Legislative Finance Committee warns that New Mexico may be slower to rebound economically than other states, citing the state’s experience in the aftermath of the Great Recession.

State labor officials can help by turning to proven low-cost re-employment programs. 

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