In the past four weeks, 22 million Americans have filed for unemployment including 5.2 million last week, according to the Labor Department. That’s essentially wiped out all the net new jobs created in the past decade, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to inflict major damage to the U.S. economy.
Now Google has added a new feature to its search engine to help people in the U.S. more quickly find out how to file for job-loss claims and collect unemployment checks.
“As searches for unemployment increase, we’re making it easier for people to find relevant resources,” Google said in a tweet Thursday. “Now when you search ‘unemployment’ in the U.S. you’ll find official guidance on eligibility and claiming benefits in your state.”
The Google search results page links to information about unemployment benefits in each U.S. state, eligibility and how to file claims. The results page also links to the Labor Department’s COVID-19 guidelines for workers and employers that includes information on changes in federal law that now permit “significant flexibility for states to amend their laws to provide unemployment insurance benefits in multiple scenarios related to COVID-19.”
Underneath those modules, Google search-results pages for “unemployment” provide links to top stories on the topic and below that are regular results for the search term.
In the past 30 days, Google searches for “unemployment” in the U.S. have grown more than tenfold, according to the Google Trend analytics tool.