Covid-19 has been particularly destructive to millennials, according to Vox. Younger workers are more fragile to economic losses, as they have less wealth cushion and work experience than older workers. Because millennials are more diverse than previous generations, with people of color comprising 55% of millennials, financial inequalities are also greater. A study conducted by the Pew Research Center suggests that millennials are the most pessimistic generation when it comes to the future of the economy. Only 42% of individuals ages 18 to 29 believe that the economy will be better in a year, while 34% believe that the conditions will be worse. Millennials have been most affected by layoffs and wage reductions because they also make up a predominant portion of workers in the leisure and hospitality industries, with people of color being hardest hit. With many still recovering from the Great Recession and facing great student debt, the crisis’ impact is greatly exacerbated for millennials.
New York Labor Commissioner, Roberta Reardon, explained that individuals who have filed for unemployment have not received their benefits because they still need to submit a weekly certification. To clarify the process, the labor department is instating a new program to tell people when and how to file documents. It will email every New Yorker with a pending claim on how to file weekly certifications online in addition to physical mail. Additionally, although Pandemic Unemployment Assistance was made available on March 27, it was not until April 5 that New York received federal guidelines on how to process those applications. Some small businesses are asking if they can begin gradually opening as bills pile up and customers suffer as a result of certain services being unavailable. Those who applied before April 20 have received a deposit of $600. A Department of Labor spokesperson confirmed that the payment was to make up for long processing times and red tape, and it was an expedited deposit to tide them over while their claims were still being processed.
The NBA suspended its season on March 11, eight weeks ago. While it is still too early to predict when the season will resume, Orlando Magic CEO Alex Martins has stated publically that the league wants to get as much of its season and playoffs as possible and will play until Labor Day if necessary. Delaying the start of next season is also a possibility, according to a report that indicates the NBA’s Board of Governors are discussing pushing the 2020-2021 season back to December. For the current season, it is estimated that 15,000 covid-19 tests would be needed for the season to resume. Players in some states may allow individual workouts at team facilities to start back up on Friday.
Yesterday, Courtney wrote about the state of California’s lawsuit against Uber and Lyft for improper classifications of their drivers as independent contractors instead of employees to avoid giving them benefits such as health insurance, sick leave, disability pay, or workers compensation. A representative from Uber says it plans to fight the lawsuit and that with the current economic crisis, “we need to make it easier, not harder, for people to quickly start earning.” However, many ride-sharing drivers do not earn enough to make a sustainable living. Lyft, on the other hand, has stated that it will work “to bring all the benefits of California’s innovation economy to as many workers as possible.” If Uber and Lyft lose this lawsuit, companies with gig-workers will be forced to take on logistical changes and financial challenges to adapt to the new labor conditions of providing their employees with wage and benefits.