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10 Jun. 2020 | Comments (0)
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the US labor market is experiencing a shock sharper than any in living memory. While likely understating the number of people at least temporarily sidelined, the official unemployment rate rocketed from close to a 50 year low to its highest level since the Great Depression in a matter of weeks. For black communities, the public health-induced whiplash into recession, almost exactly ten years after the peak of black unemployment in the wake of the Great Recession, poses a severe threat to the wellbeing of many families. With few black workers typically able to work from home and many in high-risk but low-income essential jobs, and with many households holding little wealth to cushion a financial shock, the stakes for the US policy response to COVID-19 are extremely high. Jessica Fulton, Vice President of the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies, joins to discuss the COVID-19 challenge for black communities and how it may it shape the future outlook for many vulnerable workers.