This week the Mississippi Department of Employment Security changed its telephone operation hours creating havoc for some unemployed Mississippians.
People unemployed in our state must re-certify every week through MDES to receive a check. The new procedure now offers less time to call in and more online options.
Although this caused some problems, the MDES believes online re-certifications will allow the department to be more efficient.
"MDES no longer accepts weekly certifications by telephone. Today is Thursday, is it not? The announcement says that Wednesday they'll take telephone calls now it says they won't take calls period," Tom Helms said.
Unemployed D'Lo resident Tom Helms is outraged. He said he's been getting the run around since Sunday when he called the Mississippi Department of Employment Security to try and re-certify for his check.
"I tried calling over 100 times Monday. All day long from 8 until 4:30 in the afternoon. I never got through," Helms said.
MDES has a new policy that was implemented Sunday at midnight. The change, the phone lines are now closed Monday and Tuesday, but are open for the rest of the week. MDES Executive Director, Stan McMorris, said this switch re-routes more people to use the online service which in turn helps accuracy.
"Our system has been developed so that it is both an online system and a phone system," Stan McMorris said. "But, the online system allows us to gather more information from the person making the claim. When they file by online which leads to the integrity making sure it's a valid claim that we can get all the information we need to ensure proper payment for that claim."
McMorris said all unemployed Mississippians were notified weeks ahead of time about the change. But, Helms believes he is not the only one who wasn't aware the change would happen late Sunday night.
"I thought it was ludicrous and it really hurt me. I'm used to, if I file on Sunday my check is deposited on my debit card Monday. I had a check bounce on account of this problem," Helms said.
People can re-certify online 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Helms told WLBT he was finally able to re-certify online and has since received his check. MDES said the online procedure isn't new, it has been in place for about two years.
Wednesday, June 19 2013 12:38 PM EDT2013-06-19 16:38:10 GMT
Ridgeland Police are looking for an unidentified woman who tried to use a stolen credit card at a local business. The woman tried to buy over $900 in gift cards and other merchandise.The woman was wearingMore >>
Ridgeland Police are looking for an unidentified woman who tried to use a stolen credit card at a local business. The woman tried to buy over $900 in gift cards and other merchandise.More >>
Wednesday, June 19 2013 7:34 PM EDT2013-06-19 23:34:37 GMT
The Alabama Department of Public Safety has issued a Missing Child Media Alert after a 2-month-old baby was allegedly taken by a 14-year-old girl early Monday morning from Birmingham. Police say 2-month-oldMore >>
Birmingham Police have confirmed that missing infant De'Anthony Kelly and his abductor, Dor'Sayde Gathright were located in Dallas, Texas Tuesday night, and were taken into custody without incident. More >>
Wednesday, June 19 2013 3:53 PM EDT2013-06-19 19:53:05 GMT
Jury selection for the Casey Mark Burgess trial was scheduled to get underway Monday afternoon in Brandon. Thirty-six year-old Burgess is charged with kidnapping and aggravated assault in the attemptedMore >>
Judge John Emfinger has sentenced Casey Mark Burgess to 20 years for aggravated assault and 10 years for attempted kidnapping. A jury found Casey Mark Burgess guilty of those charges Wednesday, in the attempted abduction of a woman in the Castlewoods area in September of 2011.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 7:14 PM EDT2013-06-18 23:14:24 GMT
There's a Toyota Tacoma pickup truck lodged on the east bank of the Pearl River, just below Interstate 20, in Rankin County. It is not clear how the truck got there, or exactly when.The truck was reportedMore >>
There's a Toyota Tacoma pickup truck lodged on the east bank of the Pearl River, just below Interstate 20, in Rankin County. It is not clear how the truck got there, or exactly when.More >>
Wednesday, June 19 2013 12:24 PM EDT2013-06-19 16:24:37 GMT
The Adams County Sheriff's Office is searching for a fugitive on the run. Deputies say two men stole more than $3,000 worth of merchandise from their employer and one of the culprits is still loose.PublicMore >>
The Adams County Sheriff's Office is searching for a fugitive on the run. Deputies say two men stole more than $3,000 worth of merchandise from their employer and one of the culprits is still loose.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 5:42 PM EDT2013-06-18 21:42:49 GMT
Pearl police say they seized several pounds of marijuana after a Florida man was found smoking the drug in a restaurant parking lot. Matthew Leonard, 31, of Gainesville, FL has been charged with the intentMore >>
Pearl police say they seized several pounds of marijuana after a Florida man was caught smoking the drug in a restaurant parking lot.More >>
Tuesday, June 18 2013 7:31 PM EDT2013-06-18 23:31:40 GMT
Ridgeland police officers and Madison County sheriff's deputies have surrounded a house on Bryceland Drive in Ridgeland. Lt. John Neil with the Ridgeland Police Department says a resident called policeMore >>
Ridgeland Chief of Police Jimmy Houston said the standoff in Ridgeland is resolved.More >>
Wednesday, June 19 2013 7:10 PM EDT2013-06-19 23:10:32 GMT
Some Jackson business owners called 3 On Your Side about an intersection that has had more than it's share of traffic accidents. It's located in an area known as 5-points where Bailey Avenue crosses WoodrowMore >>
Some Jackson business owners called 3 On Your Side about an intersection that has had more than it's share of traffic accidents. It's located in an area known as 5-points where Bailey Avenue crosses Woodrow Wilson near the Jackson Medical Mall.More >>
WLBT 3 - Fox 40
715 South Jefferson Street
Jackson, Mississippi 39201