The state Department of Labor and Workforce Development has given a total of $2.7 billion in pandemic unemployment assistance (PUA) to New Jersey residents. PUA is the federal program authorized by Congress as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
The number of initial claims filed in New Jersey since mid-March has now gone above 1 million, with more than 725,000 actively collecting state and federal PUA benefits. Workers in casinos, retail, food service, restaurants and airlines have been hit hardest by the pandemic, according to the labor department. Nearly 70,000 new unemployment claims were filed in the state last week.