University of Pennsylvania

Podcast: The Pandemic Perspective: Examining The hardship of unemployment and the pandemic labor market (The Evidence-to-Impact Podcast)

As the nation begins to “reopen” and the economy begins shifting, many states have begun ending pandemic-era unemployment insurance benefits. For many, unemployment insurance was the only thing keeping them afloat following the unprecedented unemployment crisis at the beginning of the pandemic. And yet, despite the unbelievable numbers of unemployed workers in our country, the stigma of receiving unemployment insurance persists. We asked ourselves why, in a time of tremendous health and economic crisis, are we giving folks who need help a hard time? We know that research shows that many families and individuals are still out of work and struggling to afford adequate food and pay mortgages or rent. Like other topics we covered – childcare and food insecurity, for example – the pandemic has made it abundantly clear that our country’s systems are unsustainable and not enough to support the financial needs of families and individuals.