• Florida residents line up outside Hialeah library to file for unemployment
  • State website for benefits crashed
  • Video shows long line of residents
  • Some people don't have masks and stand close together
  • Over half a million Florida residents unemployed as of March 15
  • Gov. DeSantis plan to add staff to unemployment team
  • Users report site not working despite DeSantis saying otherwise

As the coronavirus pandemic left many people jobless due to imposed lockdowns, hundreds of Florida residents risked exposure to line up to file for unemployment benefits after a state website for benefits crashed.

An aerial footage showed residents lining up outside a library in Hialeah, Florida, which the city used as one of the three locations to pick up and file applications for benefits.

According to the New York Post, the footage showed that the line of people seemed to go on for several blocks and while some people wore masks and observed social distancing by standing far apart from each other, there are some people in line without masks, standing too close to each other.

Governor Ron DeSantis said in a statement made earlier this week that the state would employ additional staff members to its unemployment team to respond to the increasing numbers of unemployed citizens.

On the other hand, despite DeSantis' claims that the unemployment website was up and running, some users told WESH2 that the site was not working.

DeSantis had been criticised for handling the state's response to the pandemic, which included resisting the pleas to issue a statewide stay-at-home order and refusing for weeks to close Florida's beaches.

As of March 15, over half a million Florida residents have filed for unemployment.