CHN’s COVID-19 Watch: Tracking Hardship


May 15, 2020

First edition of CHN’s COVID-19 Watch

Week after week, the toll of the pandemic grows, damaging the health and economic security of millions. Joblessness is skyrocketing; shocking numbers are running out of food, losing health insurance, and failing to pay rent. These are depression conditions, and Congress’ response must match the severity of the downturn to prevent another Great Depression. Each of these numbers point to solutions Congress must speedily enact.

1.4 million/ 86,000:

Number of confirmed cases/deaths in the US, as of 5/15 from John Hopkins University. Click here to tweet.



of mothers and children under age 12 could not afford enough food in April. Tweet this.



of people in households making less than $40,000 a year who worked in February lost their jobs in March. Tweet this.


36 million:

Number of people filing unemployment claims from March 15 – May 9. Tweet this.


14 times:

How much higher weekly unemployment claims were in week of May 2, 2020 (3.2m) than in week of May 4, 2019 (225,000). Tweet this.


36%, 42%, 44%, 47%

Percentage of people who lost job, income, or had hours reduced without pay, respectively: Whites, Blacks, Hispanics, parents of children under 18, March 25-30. Tweet this.



Percentage of people who paid none or only part of their rent or mortgage in early May. Tweet this.


7.3 million – 12.1 million:

Estimated range of people who will become newly uninsured, assuming a 20% unemployment rate. Depending on assumptions, number uninsured rise by 26% – 43% over pre-crisis levels. Tweet this.



The pandemic-caused budget shortfall estimated for states for the fiscal year starting this July 1: a crisis for health care, education and other state-funded services. Tweet this.