NewsCovering Kentucky


'I'm afraid to get hopeful': Lexington woman details unemployment woes

Posted at 11:45 PM, Jan 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-15 23:50:30-05

(LEX 18) — LEX 18 continues to hear from viewers who are struggling to navigate the unemployment system, many of whom are still waiting to receive their first unemployment checks.

One of those people is Patricia Short.

"My first phone call was made in July," Short, 59, said. "I was put in the queue and no one's ever called me back."

Fighting back tears during our interview, Short recounted how her life changed in April. As a gig worker, Short lost much of her work after the pandemic hit.

"I actually had a good business started and then the pandemic hit," she said. "I've lost it all."

For months, Short did not realize she was eligible for unemployment benefits. She discovered that she was eligible in July.

"'Okay, we're going to make it,'" she remembered thinking. "You know, this will sustain us."

But the weight that was lifted soon returned. The last time she heard from anyone in the unemployment office was July. She said she has not received any money since she filed.

"I'm consistently watching for that '502' area code constantly," she said.

Today, she and her husband are sleeping on a friend's floor, unable to afford their own place on her husband's retirement.

"My husband is a heart patient," she said. "The one thing he's not supposed to do is deal with stress. Our life is nothing but stress."