Halbrook: Governor’s Phased Reopening of Some IDES Offices “Too Little, Too Late” For Thousands of Workers Displaced by Lockdowns

The Governor’s announcement that he will reopen a small handful of IDES offices on an appointment only basis is much too little, too late to help tens of thousands of Illinoisans thrown out of work by more than a year of his COVID-related lockdowns and closures, State Representative Brad Halbrook said today.

“We are now a year and a half and 20 executive orders into this COVID debacle. We have had tens of thousands of Illinoisans who have lost their jobs or their businesses, and, with IDES offices closed, have waited months for a call back from the department. Sometimes the call back never comes at all. Now, the Governor has announced he is reopening a total of four offices for the entire state…and you have to wait for a call back to make an appointment!” Halbrook exclaimed.

Offices scheduled to reopen this week by appointment only are in Rockford, Harvey, Champaign, and Mt. Vernon.  To schedule an appointment, individuals must call the IDES Scheduling Hotline at 217.558.0401 and request a call back. Appointments must be scheduled a minimum of 24 hours in advance of the appointment time.

“For a year and a half my staff and I have been working to help families who have been unable to get through, or to get a call back from IDES. This week the Governor once again doubled down on a policy that’s already proven to be an utter failure,” Rep. Halbrook said.