With coronavirus spreading and affecting people’s ability to safely leave their homes, the disease is causing harm on two fronts. The first and most obvious way is that it’s hurting people’s health, causing symptoms such as fever, cough, and shortness of breath two to 14 days after exposure.1 The second way it’s hurting people is economically by impacting their ability to work, and some industries are getting hit worse than others. In both cases, there are websites already up to help people understand the impact of the virus and how to get help, and we’ve linked to several of these resources at the bottom of this post.
Among those are links to unemployment resources for every state. Investment banking company Morgan Stanley released a research note saying that coronavirus could cause “demand destruction,” a sharp decline in consumer spending, in industries such as tourism, entertainment, and brick-and-mortar retail.2 That seems to be playing out, as Forbes has documented a number of companies laying off workers in response to coronavirus, and many are part of those industries.3 To add to that, states such as Maryland4 and cities such as Los Angeles5 are forcing service industry businesses such as bars, restaurants (except takeout and delivery), movie theaters, and gyms to temporarily close their doors in order to help prevent the spread of coronavirus. The Bay Area is taking this a step further with a shelter-in-place order directing residents to stay home and many businesses to close.6 That means a lot of employers aren’t making money, and a lot of employees aren’t getting work hours.
It’s times like these that many people want to reach out and help their community. It’s natural to want to be near the people you care about as well as go out and support local businesses to help them stay afloat. However, some U.S. officials are saying the best thing you can do for your community is to stay home.7 Staying home slows the spread of infection, which will help the healthcare system keep up with new coronavirus cases and treat them effectively, according to population health researcher Drew Harris.8 Following this advice, doing your part for the community means only leaving your home when it’s necessary, such as to buy groceries or get medical care.
If you are out of work because of the coronavirus, you may be able to claim unemployment benefits from your state. Several states, such as Michigan9 and Ohio,10 are even expanding unemployment benefits to last longer and cover a wider variety of people. Below we are including a list of links for learning more about the virus, how it may be affecting your area, what you can do to stay safe and healthy, and where you may be able to learn more about economic help. We hope everyone in the Earnin community stays safe.
Learn more about coronavirus:
How to stay safe and healthy:
Unemployment resources by state. Links lead to pages with unemployment information specifically related to coronavirus when possible:
Note: If your state’s website is down, please refer to the U.S. Department of Labor’s letter regarding coronavirus.