Myrtle Beach area business excited about end to pandemic benefits, older workers worry about risk

Grand Strand

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WBTW) — According to the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW), there are over 81,000 jobs available in the state.

Governor Henry McMaster made an announcement ordering SCDEW to put a stop to all federal, pandemic related unemployment benefits starting June 30.

The federal benefits include an extra $300 weekly to people who are unemployed.

Owner of Royal Maids, Christine Mace, said her business has struggled to find people to work. She added she has had over 170 apply for jobs but only one of those applicants actually showed up. Mace said because of being short-staffed, she had to turn away clients.

“When the pandemic started, we were closed for two and a half weeks. We’ve struggled to get more people,” Mace said. “I think it’s excellent news and I am sure other people would feel the same way. Stop paying these people to sit at home and not go to work.”

The governor said in a statement in part: “What was intended to be a short-term financial assistance for the vulnerable and displaced during the height of the pandemic has turned into a dangerous federal entitlement, incentivizing and paying workers to stay at home rather than encouraging them to return to the workplace.

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One woman who lives here on the beach said she sees it both ways.

“I understand that there has been people struggling to get back in the workforce,” resident Lauren Egan said. “They can’t get back in their own careers but there is ways to transition over to other jobs so I am just hoping that we all get this economy back, everybody moving and doing their thing.”

News 13 received several phone calls from residents who were upset about the governor’s decision. Some were claiming they are older residents who are afraid of exposing themselves to the virus and working for the minimum wage to make ends meet. Those people decided not to share their thoughts on camera.

For a full list of what changes are expected to come, visit the Governor’s website.

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