Walk Tallahassee: Man treks 400 miles to bring awareness about unemployment struggles

Published: May. 15, 2020 at 11:49 PM EDT
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By: Katie Kaplan | WCTV Eyewitness News

May 15, 2020

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- It took 27 days, three pairs of shoes and a battle with shin splints, but Beau Guyott made it to Tallahassee on Friday.

The West Palm Beach man

during the COVID-19 era.

"That's how this was born. It's no feedback, no communication from the DEO, no communication from officials. Mixed messages," he told WCTV's Katie Kaplan.

He was motivated out of frustration, he said, after waiting weeks for his application to be processed. He describes himself as the "unofficial spokesperson" for his former coworkers at a West Palm Beach Hotel. About 70 people in all lost their jobs at the start of the Pandemic. He said only two of them had received benefits as of Friday evening.

Statistics released from the state on Friday showed the Department of Economic Opportunity had 300,000 claims that were still sitting in a verification cue. Guyott said he hopes to volunteer his time at the DEO to help process them.

Over the month-long trek, he has taken the time to stop and speak to people and business owners affected by the crisis. He has been sharing their stories on


along the way.

"I'm at a loss for words," he said. "I had no idea what to expect. I received more than I ever could have imagined from Floridians."

Guyott also started an

that the public can sign to try to get him access to help out at the DEO.

He said he planned to arrive at the DEO building in downtown Tallahassee around 11 a.m. Saturday and hopes to land a face-to-face meeting with a legislator.

He will eventually return home via bus, but said he will not stop fighting for what is right.

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