Illinois improves website and call center, designates filing days for unemployment claims

March 30, 2020 - 12:25

The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) announced on Thursday, March 26, the agency is taking additional steps to address the unprecedented volume of unemployment benefit claims the department has fielded as a result of COVID-19. 

IDES is currently working through an unparalleled number of unemployment benefit claims and questions, both online and through the call center.  

Coping with COVID: March 30

March 30, 2020 - 07:24

PPE needed. In its COVID-19 update on Saturday, the village of Flossmoor provided information about how to donate personal protective equipment to healthcare workers. Serve Illinois is seeking potential donors of masks, gloves, gowns, eye protection, infection control kits, hand sanitizer, disinfectant wipes and forehead thermometers.

State public health officials announce 1,105 new cases of COVID-19 on Sunday

March 29, 2020 - 23:10

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) announced on Sunday that 1,105 new cases of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) were confirmed in Illinois since Saturday, including 18 additional deaths. Illinois has the seventh highest number of cases in the country with 4,596. There have been 65 deaths.

On Saturday, IDPH announced the first death of an infant with COVID-19.

Thornton distillery shifts to hand sanitizer production to help in COVID-19 crisis

March 29, 2020 - 22:37

The recent state-issued order shutting down all dine-in restaurants and bars caused Thornton Distilling Company and its tasting room, The Well, to close. The owner and head distiller decided to “pivot” and turn their spirits into a desperately needed product in fighting the spread of coronavirus — hand sanitizer.

“Never did I think as a distiller I’d be making hand sanitizer, but we were in a position to help,” said Ari Klafter, head distiller at Thornton Distilling Company. “Some of the ingredients we already had, so we wanted to step in and help the community.”

LaBanque Hotel in Homewood to close temporarily because of COVID-19 pandemic

March 29, 2020 - 21:20

As the worldwide ripple effects of the coronavirus outbreak continue, the tourism and hospitality industries have been hit particularly hard, and on Friday, March 27, Homewood’s boutique hotel, La Banque,  closed its doors for “a week or two” according to Manager Meg Sakka.

The hotel joins a growing number of businesses hit by government-forced closures of schools, restaurants, bars and non-essential businesses.


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