Much like the virus itself, the coronavirus pandemic has infected every aspect of our lives and affected how we think, act, and engage in the world.
The pandemic has also exposed deep vulnerabilities in our economy. The top-line economic numbers that three months ago signaled a healthy economy — booming stock market, low unemployment, corporate profits — hid the painful truth that our economy is built on far too many low-wage, low-quality jobs.
The COVID-19 crisis has taught us that too many workers in America are one missed paycheck away from financial devastation.
The pandemic presents an opportunity to redesign an economic system that is more inclusive and sustainable, with jobs that boost the economy, not just prop it up. Broad-based prosperity can only be achieved when more people are included in the economy.
We must respond and recover from COVID-19. But at the National Fund, our eyes are firmly on redesign.
Redesigning a future around economy-boosting jobs demonstrates that our current support for frontline workers is translated into long-term commitment to their well-being and honors their inherent human dignity.
We are leveraging the knowledge, resilience, and creativity of our nationwide network, which has come together with energy and purpose to share strategies, tools, and solutions that will get us through this stronger and more resilient.
Our return to “normal” cannot be a return to things as they were before COVID-19. Planting the seeds for redesign happens right now.
National Fund collaboratives have been sharing news, information, and updates about the response to COVID-19. Below is a sample of some of the different topics of conversation and resources being shared from across the country.
“No, the coronavirus is not an ‘equalizer.’ Black people are being infected and dying at higher rates. Here’s what Milwaukee is doing about it — and why governments need to start releasing data on the race of COVID-19 patients.”
This paper outlines the steps needed to reopen the economy. It’s heartening to see that issues like improving job quality and addressing needs in neighborhoods of concentrated poverty are included in these steps.
The Association for Neighborhood and Housing Development (ANHD) has created a map of COVID-19’s impact on NYC, which overlays the number and rate of developing cases in each neighborhood with data on overcrowding, rent-burdened households, service workers, and people of color. This data informed ANHD analysis that demonstrates the socio-economic impact of COVID-19.
This article documents the impacts of recent job loss by race and gender. The information is available in state unemployment databases, so theoretically a more focused analysis could be done at the state/region/local level.