Unemployment benefits retroactive to Jan. 27

Tamuning business remain closed

As part of the social distancing policy, non-essential business on Guam remain close until April 13, leaving many employees underemployed. Photo by Mar-Vic Cagurangan

The disaster unemployment assistance related to job cuts and furloughs resulting from Covid-19 pandemic will be retroactive to Jan. 27 and will last for 39 weeks, according to Guam Labor Director Dave Dell’lsola.

Dell’lsola estimated about 2,400 displaced workers and 1,300 reduced hours. "This isn’t including the hotel industry,” he said.

However, Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero said the corresponding dollar amounts are currently not clear.

“There’s no definite number of how much they’ll be getting. [USDOL] is looking at the average nation's unemployment insurance benefits. There’s a clarification of whether other insurance benefits will apply to Guam. Once we establish those numbers and their programs, I understand by law it’s a weekly benefit for nine months,," Leon Guerrero said at her daily video conference.

Lou Leon Guerrero

Guerrero on Sunday signed an agreement with U.S. Department of Labor the Relief for Workers Affected by Coronavirus Act (the Act), or Public Law 116-136, which was enacted on March 28.