News 6, DEO help single mom unlock 12 weeks of unemployment benefits

Mother of 5 diagnosed with COVID -19 just days after starting new job

Kimberly Kleckly has been fighting to get her state unemployment benefits restarted after a two-day training session for a new job was cut short because she tested positive for COVID 19.

“Two days of training and that was it,” the frustrated mother of five told News 6. “I’m behind in everything.”

She said the bills have been mounting and without family, she would already be out on the streets.

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Kleckly said she had just landed the public transportation bus cleaning position in Brevard County when the test for COVID-19 came back positive.

News 6 reviewed her payroll sheet to confirm she only worked a total of 11 1/2 hours.

Her DEO account listed her as “returned to work,” leaving her unemployment benefits on hold.

“I asked to speak to a supervisor and then they told me to be patient, they’re backed up,” she said, “I have like 12 different lines with the date and it’s saying hold, hold ,hold, hold.”

News 6 contacted the Department of Economic Opportunity to bring attention to Kleckly’s status.

DEO press secretary Paige Landrum said the DEO always reviews the work history of any person seeking benefits after they have been employed again

“Individuals that have returned to work will need to undergo review through the Department’s adjudication process to ensure benefits are paid only for the weeks the claimant is unemployed,” Landrum said.

On Wednesday, Kleckly said she had received the back benefits in her bank account.

She has tested negative for COVID-19 twice and is currently looking for another job in the Fort Lauderdale area.

If you would like to help her family or you have an unemployment issue, email us:

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