Gallup: 25% of U.S. workers fear they'll lose their jobs due to the coronavirus pandemic

With an additional 22 million Americans claiming unemployment benefits, the COVID-19 pandemic has erased nearly all the jobs gains of the last decade

A Los Angeles Regional Food Bank in Van Nuys, California. Organizers said they had distributed food for 1,500 families amid the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus.


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The coronavirus pandemic has erased nearly all the jobs gains of the last decade in just one month — and millions of people who still have their jobs fear they’ll be next.

Last week, the government reported that another 5.25 million people had applied for unemployment benefits in the second week of April, bringing new jobless claims over the past month to 22 million. Economists estimate the unemployment rate has jumped to 15% or above.

This is reflected in a new Gallup poll released Tuesday, which paints a dour picture for American workers: 25% of employed Americans now say it is likely they will lose their jobs or be laid off in the next 12 months, compared to 8% last year. Some 32% of employed Americans of color feel the same way, versus 21% last year.

Employed women, lower-income Americans (those earning less than $40,000 per year) and non-college graduates worry more about the prospect of losing their jobs compared to their counterparts, and nearly one quarter of employed Americans earning less than $40,000 say they could be without a job for a week or less before experiencing “significant financial hardship,” Gallup said.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday called on the federal government to pay frontline workers hazard pay and a 50% bonus “because they are the true heroes in this crisis,” he said. “This crisis is not over yet, and as long as these workers continue to work and expose themselves to the virus, they should be properly compensated,” he added.

Low-income renters are at a high risk of eviction, according to Mary Cunningham, a fellow at the Urban Institute, a left-of-center nonprofit policy group. The recent $2 trillion CARES Act, a federal stimulus package, “didn’t do enough to address increases in housing insecurity for the nearly 11 million low-income renter households paying more than half their income toward rent,” she said.

More than half (53.5%) of renters reported that they lost their job, concluded a survey made up of 2,775 landlords and 7,379 tenants by Avail, an online resource for landlords. The National Multifamily Housing Council tracked data from 13.4 million apartment units and found that 31% of renters had not paid their rent in the first week of April, up from 19% last year.

As of Tuesday morning, there were 2,495,994 million confirmed cases of coronavirus and 171,255 fatalities worldwide. More than 247,500 of the 787,960 confirmed cases in the U.S. were in New York State.

Cuomo on Monday confirmed 4,726 additional cases of novel coronavirus, bringing the total to 247,512 confirmed cases in New York State. Some 136,806 of those positive cases were in New York City, which remains the national epicenter, according to Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Systems Science and Engineering.

There were another 478 deaths from COVID-19 in New York State on Monday, bringing the total in the state to over 14,600. On the plus side, daily fatalities fell below 500 for the first time since the beginning of April.

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