Nineteen Tragic Facts About the COVID-19 Economy

87 million

87 million workers will lose federally mandated COVID-19 sick leave at the end of December unless Congress acts to extend the law.

50 million

50 million people are now facing hunger at least once a month, including one in four children. The rate of adults who sometimes or often do not have enough to eat is double in Black and Latino homes, according to the Associated Press.

30 million

30 million people are facing eviction as of December 31, 2020 when the current Centers for Disease Control moratorium on evictions ends. There has been a 70 per cent increase in the number of people paying their rent by credit card.

16 million

16 million unemployed workers have already lost or will lose their federal unemployment benefits by December 26, 2020. 4.4 million people have already exhausted their federal benefits and another 12 million people stand to lose their unemployment benefits by December 26, 2020 unless Congress passes new laws, according to the Century Foundation.

12 million

As many as 12 million people who were entitled to the $1,200 stimulus cheque never received it.

10 million

Two major national law firms and several national restaurant chains received $10 million dollars each from the Paycheck Protection Program. More than 25 per cent of the $500 billion in aid went to just one per cent of borrowers.

7 million

7 million more Americans, about 11 per cent, now live in poverty, than did months ago when the $600 Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program was operating. (NBC News)

2.2 million

Since January, 2.2 million women have lost or quit their jobs or are no longer looking for work because mothers have been forced to choose between caring for their children and their jobs.

1.5 million

Of the record high 1.5 million homeless children in the U.S., over 400,000 have dropped off their school's radar during the pandemic. (Education Week)

1.4 million

One million four hundred thousand children have tested positive for COVID-19. (American Academy of Pediatrics)


One hundred and ten thousand restaurants have closed permanently, according to the National Restaurant Association.


At least 106,000 nursing home residents and staff died from COVID-19 as of early December, around 39 per cent of the overall deaths reported. (NBC News)

600 per cent

Failure rates in math and English jumped 600 per cent among low-income students in some school districts recently in Maryland. Nationally grade school students are falling significantly behind in math and the percentages may even be worse because a large percentage of students were not even present when testing was done. Several states report that many fewer children enrolled back in school this fall than were there a year ago.

400 per cent

COVID-19 rates are 400 per cent higher in state and federal prisons than among the general public and the death rate is more than twice as high. National Commission on COVID-19 and Criminal Justice.

400 per cent

Black, Hispanic and Native Americans are four times as likely to be hospitalized for COVID-19 than whites. (CNN)

200 per cent

The risk of being exposed to COVID-19 at the grocery store is twice as high in low-income neighborhoods as in high-income neighborhoods.

37 per cent

African Americans are 37 per cent more likely to die from COVID-19 than whites; Asians are 53 per cent more likely; Hispanics 16 per cent.

31 per cent

There has been a 31 per cent increase in mental health emergency room visits for children since the pandemic began and an overall 24 per cent increase in emergency room visits for children. (Centers for Disease Control)

16 per cent

College applications are down 16 per cent from first generation students and lower-income students.


In 13 states, the unemployment benefits provided fall below the federal poverty line of $245 a week according to the Government Accountability Office.

(Popular Resistance, December 11, 2020. Photo: Stimulus Checks or Strike)

This article was published in

Volume 50 Number 49 - December 19, 2020

Article Link:
Nineteen Tragic Facts About the COVID-19 Economy - Bill Quigley


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