Woman says she has spent 11 days on hold with unemployment department: ‘Been a nightmare’

A woman says she spent 11 days on hold with unemployment trying to get answers regarding benefits. (Source: KUSA)
Published: Nov. 15, 2023 at 9:04 PM CST
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DENVER (KUSA) - How long would you spend on hold waiting to speak with a representative over the phone?

A Colorado woman says she spent the equivalent of 11 days on hold waiting for answers about her unemployment benefits ever since losing her job in May.

“In the month of June, I spent hours on hold,” Lisa Craig said.

According to Craig, she spent so many hours waiting to ask when she’ll get her first unemployment check that she started keeping track.

Since she applied for unemployment over the summer, Craig said she has waited on hold for the equivalent of more than 11 straight days.

“It’s worse than fingernails on a chalkboard,” Craig said regarding the department’s hold music.

Craig said she’s only reached a human at the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment about five times.

They told her someone fraudulently filed using her name about three years ago and a new fraud detection system put her on a program integrity hold.

“What is program integrity?” Craig asked.

Officials said the department is looking into her case and “anticipate most program integrity issues to be cleared within a week unless there are risk factors that require additional investigation.”

“It’s been a nightmare,” Craig said.

Her savings have run out with her retirement helping to keep her lights on.

She says she has waited long enough.

“I can’t even imagine a reason that this should be happening,” Craig said.

Now, she hopes she won’t have to keep logging hours on hold through the holidays.

“I would do it but enough is enough,” Craig said.

According to the state, the department has moved resources around to try to help, and call center representatives have new training to help pass along program integrity issues to other workers for review.