By CBS 2 Chicago Staff

CHICAGO (CBS) — The Illinois Department of Employment Security Wednesday reported 110,486 new weekly jobless claims were filed for the week ending Dec. 26. That is down 34.5% from last week, which saw 145,054 new jobless claims, the most weekly jobless claims the state has had since the end of March.

During that same time last year, 16,537 jobless claims were filed in Illinois. This year’s number is a 568% increase.

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Since early March, CBS 2 has tracked more than 2.4 million total claims in the state.

Illinois reported 138,359 unemployment claims during the week of Dec. 6.

There were 107,616 new unemployment claims filed in Illinois the week of Nov. 29.

Another 74,131 new unemployment claims were filed across the state the week of Nov. 22.

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There were 46,800 unemployment claims filed in Illinois the week of Nov. 8.

Illinois processed 67,158 unemployment claims the week of Nov. 1.

There were 73,515 unemployment claims filed in Illinois the week of Oct. 26.

IDES has faced ongoing struggles filling claims during the pandemic. CBS 2 spoke with four IDES employees in May. For the first time, these workers offered a glimpse into the challenges IDES employees face daily working to get thousands of new unemployment claims processed, as well as the factors they believe contribute to why so many people have not received their benefits.

CBS 2 has extensively reported about how unemployment has surged in Illinois and neighboring states during the coronavirus pandemic.

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CBS 2 Chicago Staff