Coronavirus sparked

Why coronavirus sparked massive protests in Serbia

By Miodrag SOVILJ (AFP)  
2 hours ago in World

For many Serbs, it was the last straw: when the president announced the resumption of a weekend curfew to fight the coronavirus pandemic, thousands took to the streets in anger.

Who are these protesters and what caused the outrage? And could the demonstrations, which have degenerated into violence, endanger the rule of President Aleksandar Vucic, who critics accuse of growing authoritarianism?

– Why are people protesting? –

Frustration has been building up over Serbia’s rollercoaster response to the coronavirus outbreak.

After initially playing down the dangers, authorities swung from ultra-tight lockdowns to a speedy return to normal last month ahead of national elections that cemented Vucic’s grip on power.

Critics blame Vucic for a second wave of infections, which shot up after the June 21 vote.

“Our government is simply looking after its own interest, the people are just collateral damage, said Jelina Jankovic, a protester.

Serbia has reported some 370 fatalities but many accuse authorities of fudging the figures, which the government denies.

On Tuesday, Vucic announced the return of a round-the-clock weekend curfew to combat the second surge.

“We relaxed too much, made many errors, and that is an individual blame on all of us”, he said.

Protesters outraged by the finger-pointing then flooded into the centre of the capital the same evening.

While the government backtracked on the curfew, the protests have continued against a leader accused of trampling on Serbia’s democratic institutions.

“The pressure cooker is now exploding”, said Bonn-based Serbian journalist Nemanja Rujevic, adding that the “unhinged” management of the health crisis compounded long-running frustration over Vucic’s authoritarian rule.

– Who is protesting? –

The demonstrations have not been led by any particular party, with groups spanning from the left to the far-right.

There are young people and families as well as groups holding religious icons and chanting about Serbia’s former province Kosovo.

On the first day of protests Tuesday, a far-right group leading the frontline broke into parliament, setting off clashes with the police with tear gar being fired.

Most nights start out peacefully before bands of protesters begin hurling stones, flares and firecrackers at police officers.

On Thursday, some demonstrators sat down in front of parliament to show they came in peace. Many of them accuse the state of planting ‘agents provocateurs’ to discredit them.

“I am always in favour of peaceful demonstrations because violence breeds violence and that is not why we came,” said 30-year-old Tijana Milojevic.

Analysts say these divisions could affect the movement.

“If no political leadership is identified the protests will probably die off,” as they could be hijacked by the far-right, leading to a loss of popular support, or spawn several clashing factions, said Bosko Tripkovic, a law professor at the University of Birmingham.

– Is Vucic under threat? –

Probably not.

From prime minister to president, Vucic has been steadily increasing his powers for the past eight years.

This has been accompanied by sweeping control over the media with many television channels and tabloids serving as propaganda outlets, according to US-based Freedom House, which no longer considers Serbia a democracy.

The national broadcaster RTS ignored the first night of protests and aired a Jackie Chan film.

“Previous protests in Serbia have shown that the government can tolerate several months of peaceful demonstrations by several thousand people — as long as it controls the media narrative,” said Rujevic.

The main opposition camp boycotted the June election, which means Vucic’s party firmly controls parliament.

For the moment, the crowd is not big enough to worry the president, said Florian Bieber said, a Balkan expert from the University of Graz.

“With the opposition being divided, it cannot become a serious threat to the government,” Bieber said.

– How has the state responded?

Scenes of police brutality captured on television have gone viral, including an incident Tuesday in which officers used batons to beat three men sitting peacefully on a bench.

Yet the Serbian ombudsman has claimed that “no excessive force was used” to quell the protests.

Vucic has branded the protesters “criminal hooligans” and made vague accusations of “foreign meddling”.

Pro-government tabloids have evoked “Russian interference”.

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Coronavirus Protect

Coronavirus FAQ: How Do I Protect Myself If The Coronavirus Can Linger In The Air?

panel 1

panel 1

I’m hearing a lot of talk about the coronavirus spreading through aerosols — is wearing a mask in a grocery store enough protection? What else should I do to stay safe?

Quick answer first: Going to the grocery store where you and everyone else is wearing a mask and keeping a distance from each other is still considered a low-risk activity. Go get your summer strawberries!

For background, aerosols are tiny microdroplets containing the virus that can be expelled when we talk or breathe, and can stay aloft and travel on air currents. It’s still unclear how much of a role they play in spreading the virus, but recently more than 200 scientists wrote an open letter asking the World Health Organization to pay more attention to them.

The agency still maintains that the greater risk of spread appears to be from droplets — larger particles, also expelled when we talk or breathe, which settle more quickly and are less likely to accumulate in the air. However, WHO released a new scientific brief on July 9 saying that airborne transmission might be contributing to spread in crowded, poorly-ventilated indoor spaces such as gyms, choir practice rooms, and nightclubs. But how much transmission aerosolized particles are responsible for, versus droplets and contaminated surfaces, they can’t say for sure.

WHO: Airborne Transmission Plays Limited Role In Coronavirus Spread

“What we are calling for is more systematic research to be done in these types of settings,” said Maria Van Kerkhove, technical lead for WHO’s health emergencies program, at a press conference July 10. In other words, stay tuned.

Bottom line: it’s impossible to rule out that some amount of transmission may be caused by aerosols. If you want to err on the side of caution, here’s what some infectious disease researchers say can help minimize the risks:

Face away from people when you talk: When you’re talking face-to-face with someone, you’re in direct line of the plumes of breath that comes out of their mouths when they speak. “If there’s any scenario where I’m face-to-face, with someone, I move my head off-center so I’m no longer inhaling that direct plume,” says Seema Lakdawala, a flu transmission researcher at the University of Pittsburgh. One tip that helps her is to not make direct eye contact with people. It can be awkward, she acknowledges, but “it’s not just about protecting myself, but also about protecting other people,” since it’s possible to shed the virus without knowing you’re infected.

Wear your mask properly: Wear a layered cloth mask in public spaces, especially if you’re indoors or in a setting where you can’t socially distance. Make sure it covers your nose and mouth. This will catch many of the droplets that come out when you breathe or speak, and prevent them from getting into the air. Ideally, to take precautions against tiny, aerosolized microdroplets, “we should be masking everyone with better masks,” says Abraar Karan, a physician at Harvard Medical School. But the N95 masks that effectively filter most aerosol particles are in short supply and uncomfortable to wear. Karan suggests well-fitting KN95 masks which have similar protection (but make sure your mask isn’t counterfeit).

Make the indoors more like the outdoors: “You limit aerosol transmission by increasing ventilation and increasing air circulation — by opening a window, putting on a fan and just moving the air,” says Lakdawala, who keeps several fans running at all times in her lab and office space. Moving air disperses the particles in the air, and makes it less likely that someone will breathe in a concentrated cloud of infectious virus. Donald Milton, an infectious disease aerobiologist at the University of Maryland, and lead author on the open letter about aerosols, also recommends cleaning indoor air, through air filtration and ultraviolet sanitizing light. “You wouldn’t drink water downstream from another town without treating it. But we breathe air from other people without treating it,” he says.

Limit the amount of time you’re in close contact with people: The public health rule of thumb for what counts as an exposure is close contact with an infected person for 15 minutes or more, so uncrowded grocery stores where everyone is masked and moving represents a relatively low-risk situation, both Lakdawala and Milton agree. Hopefully, you’re not standing in one aisle for very long, but you’re going to shop efficiently, says Lakdawala, “So even if there are fine aerosols that are getting released by somebody who is infected, they’re getting diluted out as these people move in air currents.” Indoor bars, restaurants and other situations where people are staying in one place for a period of time, and speaking or singing loudly, make Milton more wary. “I don’t know how to drink a beer with a surgical mask on,” he says, “And I wouldn’t go sing at choir practice, OK?”

Keep a buffer of personal space: This isn’t just important for the spray of droplets, it may also help when it comes to tiny airborne particles.If you are planning to sit and talk to a friend, keeping a distance of at least 6 feet creates more opportunities for airflow between you and others. “We have a happy hour in our neighborhood where everybody brings our chairs, and we sit on someone’s lawn,” says Lakdawala. “Everyone is spatially distanced, and we bring our own drinks and talk.” Maintaining a distance from others means there’s more ventilation and space for air to pass between you, says Lakdawala.

Each precaution adds another layer of safety from aerosolized particles, says Milton. “Wearing a mask means you’re putting less virus droplets into the air, sucking less out [of the air]. Keeping distances means there’s less of it near you. And having good ventilation or air sanitation means what’s in the air is getting removed. All of those things add up to giving you good protection.”

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Coronavirus death

Coronavirus death toll over twice as high among people of color below 65 than for white Americans: CDC

More than a third of deaths among Hispanic Americans (34.9percent ) and almost a third of deaths among non-White Americans (29.5%) were in people younger than 65

                            Coronavirus death toll over twice as high among people of color below 65 than for white Americans: CDC

(Getty Images)

The Covid-19 pandemic has proved to be deadlier for individuals of colour below the age of 65, with Hispanic and non-White Americans experiencing significantly higher death toll when compared with White individuals, according to a new investigation from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Researchers discovered that among people younger than 65 who died from Covid-19, roughly 34.9percent were Hispanic and 29.5% were non-White. That is over twice that of White Americans: 13.2percent of deaths among White folks were in people younger than 65. This stark difference was’notable,’ said the writers, who analyzed supplementary data for 10,647 deaths in 16 public health jurisdictions. The deaths had occurred during February 12-April 24, 2020.

“Using national case-based surveillance and supplementary data reported by 16 authorities, features of over 10,000 decedents with laboratory-confirmed Covid-19 were clarified. Over one-third of Hispanic decedents (34.9%) and almost one third (29.5%) of nonwhite decedents were elderly below 65 years, but just 13.2% of white decedents were elderly below 65 years. The proportions of Hispanic and non-White decedents who were aged below 65 years were greater than double those of white decedents. The comparatively substantial proportions of Hispanic and nonwhite decedents aged less than 65 years were notable,” states the study. 

Among the 10,647 deaths, 60.6percent were male, 74.8% were 65 years or older, 24.4% were Hispanic, 24.9% were Black, 35percent were White, and 6.3% were Asian, 0.1percent were American Indian or Alaskan natives, 0.1percent were Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander, 2.9percent were multiracial or other race, and race/ethnicity was unidentified for 6.3%. Among those who perished, 9,997 (93.9percent ) were from nyc, New Jersey, or the state of Washington, three areas with early widespread flow of Covid-19, the median age being 75 years.

According to the analysis, non-White Americans (median age 31) are younger as a complete than White Americans (median age 44), but Covid-19 deaths among people under age 65 surpassed their percentage of the populace. Researchers found that while 33.9percent of people under 65 who perished were they account for just 20% of the under-65 population in the US. Likewise Black, Asian, and other non-White individuals accounted for 40.2% of deaths under ), even though they make up only 23% of those under 65 at the united states. Black Americans accounted for 30% of deaths under age 65; Asian individuals and multiracial individuals accounted for 6.1% and 4.1%,  respectively. White individuals accounted for 18.4percent of the deaths among those below 65. 

Clinical features of patients who died from Covid-19 from the US in February 12-April 24. (CDC)

“The median ages among Hispanic and nonwhite decedents (71 and 72 years, respectively) were 9-10 years lower than that of white decedents (81 years). However, the percentage of Hispanic decedents aged below 65 decades (33.9percent ) exceeded the proportion of Hispanic persons aged below 65 decades in the united states. Inhabitants (20%). The proportion of non-White Covid-19 decedents aged less than 65 years (40.2percent ) also exceeded the general percentage of nonwhite decedents aged under 65 years (23%) in the US population,” the findings state.

According to the authors, additional study is required to comprehend the explanations for these gaps. They say it is possible that rates of Covid-19 transmission are greater among Hispanic and non-White persons below 65 years than among White people, and a single potential contributing factor is higher percentages of Hispanic and non-White individuals engaged in occupations (for instance, service industry) or essential actions that preclude physical distancing. “It is also feasible that the Covid-19 pandemic affected communities of younger, non-White persons during the analysis period. Even though these data didn’t permit assessment of connections between race/ethnicity, underlying medical conditions, and non-biologic facets, additional studies to understand and address those racial/ethnic differences are required to inform targeted attempts to stop Covid-19 mortality,” say experts.

Consistent with previous reports, the analysis also reveals most people (roughly three fourths) who perished had underlying health conditions. At least underlying medical condition was reported for 8,134 (76.4percent ) of those who died and for whom supplemental data were gathered, including 83.1% less than 65 years. In general, the most common underlying medical conditions have been cardiovascular disease (60.9%), diabetes mellitus (39.5%), chronic kidney disease (20.8percent ), and chronic lung disorder (19.2%). Among people under 65 who died, 83.1percent had one or more underlying health conditions, which amount was 69.5percent for those 85 years and above. Diabetes was more prevalent underlying condition among individuals younger than 65 who died (49.6percent ) than among those aged 85 years and above (25.9%).

The study also shows that approximately three fourths who expired from Covid-19 had underlying medical conditions (Getty Images)

Among those who died, 62% died in hospitals. By age group, the largest percentage that died in the emergency department (6.8%) or at home (1.0%) was younger than 65 decades (combined total of 7.8percent ) and decreased with increasing age category. The percent who died in long-term maintenance centers improved by increasing age and was greatest among people 85 years and older (12.6%). “One of decedents aged less than 65 years, 7.8% died in an emergency department or in home. These out-of-hospital deaths may reflect lack of healthcare access, delays in seeking care, or even diagnostic flaws,” write authors. 

The group says additional studies are required to describe associations between age, race/ethnicity, Covid-19 disease, illness severity, underlying health conditions (especially diabetes), socioeconomic status (poverty and access to healthcare), behavioral factors (capability to follow mitigation recommendations and preserve essential work responsibilities), along with out-of-hospital deaths. Regional and state-level efforts to inspect the functions of these variables in Covid-19 transmission and Covid-19-associated deaths could lead to concentrated, community-level, mortality avoidance initiatives, they explain. 

The specialists recommend health communications campaigns to encourage patients, especially those who have underlying health conditions, to seek medical attention earlier in their own illnesses. “Examples include health communication campaigns geared towards Hispanics and non-White persons aged below 65 years. These campaigns could promote the need and social distancing for wearing cloth face coverings. Healthcare providers should be invited to look at the chance of severe disease among younger persons who are Hispanic, non-White, or have medical problems. More instantaneous diagnoses could facilitate earlier execution of supportive services to minimize morbidity among people and earlier isolation of infectious persons to protect communities from Covid-19 transmission,” say investigators. 

For more info and statistics on the coronavirus pandemic, click on the Newsbreak tracker here

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Coronavirus Study

Study of Coronavirus in Pregnant Women Finds Striking Racial Differences

About 10 percent of Black, Hispanic and Latino participants in a Philadelphia study of pregnant women had been exposed to the coronavirus, compared with 2 percent of white participants.

Credit…Charles Krupa/Associated Press

Black, Hispanic and Latino pregnant women in Philadelphia are five times as likely as their white counterparts to have been exposed to the coronavirus, according to data collected from nearly 1,300 women between April and June.

The findings, which have not been published in a scientific journal, were based on tests for coronavirus antibodies, which reveal a person’s past exposure to the virus even if it did not cause any symptoms.

The study bolsters other research showing that the coronavirus disproportionately affects Black and Latino people.

“The racial disparities are striking, and important to bring out,” said Whitney Robinson, a social epidemiologist at the University of North Carolina, who was not involved in the study. “This reinforces what we’ve already seen, and adds more certainty that the racial differences are real.”

The study’s numbers dwarf previous estimates of the virus’s skewed impact on racial and ethnic minorities. Across the United States, Black and Latino people have been reported to be about three times as likely to contract the coronavirus as white people — a trend roughly mirrored by data collected by the city of Philadelphia. But these patterns have largely been based on tests for active infections, which have struggled to accurately capture where and how the virus has spread.

Although there is increasing awareness that many coronavirus infections cause few to no symptoms, many diagnostic testing centers — stymied by a lack of equipment and trained personnel — have rationed their tests to only people who are noticeably sick. And people who have reliable access to health care and insurance, often white and well-off, are more likely to seek out tests than others.

Diagnostic testing sites in many cities, including Philadelphia, have also been cordoned off by ZIP code, said Carmen Guerra, a health disparities researcher at the University of Pennsylvania who was not involved with the study, but is collaborating with the research team on others. Residents who do not own cars or cannot afford public transportation, she said, must surmount enormous barriers to determining their health status.

Tests that look for coronavirus genes also can’t find people who were previously infected and are now virus free. To fill that gap, several health centers in the area are now offering antibody tests in addition to those for active infections, said Dr. Karen Puopolo, a neonatologist at Pennsylvania Hospital and an author of the study, which was posted to the website medRxiv on Friday. But many people decide not to get antibody tests, painting an incomplete picture of exposure throughout the city.

Keeping tabs on pregnant women, who have continued to seek medical care amid the pandemic, could offer a less biased glimpse into what is going on in the population at large, said Scott Hensley, a virologist at the University of Pennsylvania who also was an author of the study.

Dr. Hensley, Dr. Puopolo and their colleagues searched for coronavirus antibodies in anonymized blood samples from 1,293 women who gave birth at Pennsylvania Hospital or the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania between April 4 and June 3. These two medical centers see about half of Philadelphia’s live births, Dr. Hensley said.

Unlike diagnostic tests that search for stretches of genetic material specific to the coronavirus, antibody tests hunt for immune molecules produced in response to the virus and can thus detect infections that have already resolved, even if they did not result in overt symptoms. That potentially gives researchers a window into the past — and a chance to catalog infections that diagnostic tests miss.

The researchers found that just over 6 percent of all the women they tested carried coronavirus antibodies.

But once teased apart by race and ethnicity, the numbers revealed striking differences. About 10 percent of the study’s Black, Hispanic and Latino participants had been exposed to the coronavirus, compared with 2 percent of the white women and 1 percent of the Asian women, the study found.

“When I saw the data, I almost fell out of my chair,” Dr. Hensley said.

Some have questioned the accuracy of certain antibody tests, which sometimes mistakenly detect coronavirus antibodies in a person who has never been infected. But Dr. Hensley said the team confirmed that its laboratory test had a false positive rate of just 1 percent, on par with some of the best commercial tests.

Mounting evidence shows that the pandemic’s outsize effects on Black, Hispanic and Latino people have been driven in large part by a long list of social factors that increase their risk of exposure to the virus, Dr. Guerra said.

Black, Hispanic and Latino individuals are more likely to work essential jobs that cannot be done from home. Many live in multigenerational households and rely on public transportation, and have struggled for access to reliable sources of information about Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

Toxic and chronic stress, born out by decades of persistent racism, have also taken a toll on the health and well-being of Black, Hispanic and Latino people, Rachel Hardeman, a reproductive health equity researcher at the University of Minnesota who was not involved in the study, said in an email.

As health workers and researchers try to ramp up testing efforts nationwide, pregnant women could play a larger role in helping experts track the spread of disease, Dr. Robinson said.

“We also need more targeted research on pregnant populations” in general, she added.

Recent analyses have found that pregnant women infected by the coronavirus may be at higher risk of worse outcomes, Dr. Hardeman said. Pregnant women are also thought to be more vulnerable to certain infections because carrying a fetus tamps down the immune system.

The study was not designed to assess whether pregnant women are at higher risk of contracting the coronavirus than other groups. But if evidence of that emerges, it would be “concerning,” given the other known racial disparities among pregnant women, said Dr. Ibukun Akinboyo, a pediatrician and infectious disease specialist at Duke University. For instance, Black women are three to four times more likely than white women to die during or soon after childbirth.

Pregnant women — who tend to be young and healthy members of the work force — do not represent the population as a whole, Dr. Robinson added. “We still need to have samples like this from kids and older people, and unpartnered people.”

Still, these patterns “reflect the structural inequities in the United States,” and underscore the need to address the factors that underlie them, Dr. Akinboyo said. That is powerful for those trying to curb disease transmission, but it can also help identify and protect those in need.

“Highlighting the groups that are more likely to get infected,” she said, “means we can get resources to the right groups.”

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Coronavirus Risks

What we know about coronavirus risks to school age children

By Faith Karimi | CNN

As coronavirus cases spike nationwide, most parents are wondering whether it’s safe to send their children back to school. But with most of the research and testing geared toward adults, the answer is complicated.

President Donald Trump has ramped up pressure on officials to reopen schools, saying decisions to remain closed are motivated by politics. But while some parents are eager to get back to some sort of normalcy, others are fearful their children might get exposed to infections.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued steps to keep children safe when schools reopen, including placing desks six feet apart, ensuring children wear face coverings and the closure of communal areas like dining rooms and playgrounds.

Here’s what we know about the risks to children:

Children are not immune to coronavirus

Children also test positive for coronavirus — there’s no question about that. And while they don’t get as sick as adults, they can still become dangerously ill, experts say.

In Florida, four children under age 17 have died of coronavirus complications. At the height of the pandemic, New York saw a growing number of children hospitalized with troubling symptoms linked to coronavirus. Several of them died. And in Texas, about 1,335 people have tested positive at child care facilities — about a third of them children.

“We shouldn’t be complacent and think that if a child contracts coronavirus all will be fine. Chances are all will be fine, but we just don’t know. This is particularly true for children who have underlying conditions, such as obesity or lung disease,” said Elizabeth Cohen, CNN’s senior medical correspondent.

But children are not the only concern when schools reopen. With nearly a third of teachers nationwide over age 50, they are more vulnerable to fatal infections. Asymptomatic transmission of the virus is a major concern — and the teachers can then pass the disease to more vulnerable people. A surge in schools can translate into a broader uptick a few weeks later.

“As any parent knows, children are little disease vectors. We don’t know precisely how effective children are at passing on the virus that causes Covid-19, but it’s a big concern,” Cohen said. “Also, while children don’t get as sick from Covid-19 as adults do, they can become seriously ill. We should not be lulled into thinking children are immune to Covid-19.”

Their symptoms can differ from adults

Children have been known to get a whole set of different symptoms — adding to the uncertainty of the virus that has killed more than 133,000 people nationwide. The varying symptoms make it especially harder to pinpoint.

In the United States and the United Kingdom, hospitalized children between ages 2 and 15 had a condition doctors called multisystem inflammatory syndrome. The symptoms are similar to toxic shock syndrome and Kawasaki disease, which cause inflammation in the walls of blood vessels. In rare cases, it can lead to deadly limitations in blood flow.

Many of the children tested positive for Covid-19 or had its antibodies but they didn’t necessarily have typical coronavirus symptoms such as respiratory distress. Their symptoms included a high temperature along with a rash, swollen neck glands, hands and feet, dry cracked lips and redness in both eyes.

Coronavirus causes a wide variety of symptoms in children, according to a study published in an American Academy of Pediatrics journal.

In that study, Dr. Rabia Agha and colleagues from Maimonides Children’s General Hospital in Brooklyn studied 22 children with coronavirus. They found most did not have classic symptoms. Fifteen patients had a fever and nine had respiratory symptoms. Two had seizures and two were entirely asymptomatic.

Research focused on children is limited

It’s been about six months since coronavirus started ravaging the world, and health officials are learning as they go along. And while numerous tests have been conducted to get more insight on the pathogen, not many have been focused on pediatric cases.

“Covid-19 is so new that we don’t have nearly enough research on it for adults, let alone for children,” Cohen said. “We can’t say definitively that the risks of them returning to school are minimal. Much more research still needs to be done.”

Unlike the flu, which has consistently shown that schools and children are major transmission instruments in communities, not as much is know on the coronavirus, said Dr. Robert Redfield of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“We really don’t have evidence that children are driving the transmission cycle of this,” he said.

However, he added, the ability of this virus to cause significant illness in children “is very, very — very limited.”

The US data is incomplete because the country has not been testing enough children to determine how widespread the virus is, said Deborah Birx, a member of the White House coronavirus task force.

“If you look across all of the tests that we’ve done … the portion that has been the lowest-tested portion is the under-10-year-olds,” Birx said. “So we’re putting into place other ways to get testing results from them and … try to really figure this out.”

Researchers are working on a saliva test that’ll make it easier to test children.

A majority of children under 18 don’t have symptoms, she said. And until health officials get more testing targeted to that age group, there’s no evidence on how many children die as a result of Covid-19.


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Coronavirus unemployment

Coronavirus unemployment: Pace of Bay Area layoff plans eases

The pace of layoffs proposed in the Bay Area slipped dramatically in June, official country filings show, offering a hopeful sign for a regional market that’s been bludgeoned by coronavirus-linked business shutdowns arranged by government agencies.

The total image for job reductions in the nine-county region also included details of staffing reductions being planned by Intuit, the Bay Club, CorePower Yoga, along with other businesses, according to layoff notices posted together with the country’s Employment Development Department.

Throughout June, Bay Area companies revealed plans for a combined amount of about 19,500 layoffs, data posted on the EDD website reveals.

The June totals were down dramatically from the 46,400 in projected layoffs which were revealed to the EDD in May, which equates to a 58 percent decline, this news organization’s evaluation of the EDD filings reveals.

The WARN notices do not supply a whole image of the employment situation in the Bay Area. No advice is given by the filings and don’t detail all the job cuts in the area. The WARN finds mostly serve to signify that the pace of job reductions in the area in addition to sketch out details of staffing discounts\.

The layoff totals in June were 74 percent under the 74,200 layoffs that were published by the EDD in April, which was the peak month for job cuts amid the business shutdowns on account of the coronavirus.

However, the June staffing reductions were 40 percent higher compared to 13,900 layoffs the EDD published during March. Plus, the layoffs in March, April, May, and June were several times larger compared to 3,000 layoffs detailed in the WARN notices for January along with the two,400 in February, the EDD filings show.

The batches of WARN notices for late June additionally revealed staffing cutbacks planned by Bay Area companies in an array of businesses.

Intuit shown in a WARN notice in late June that it planned to permanently lay off roughly 189 employees in Mountain View in a staffing reduction scheduled for Aug. 21. These staffing reductions were a part of job reductions which Intuit declared in a June 22 blog article which were anticipated to complete 715 global.

The Bay Club, a sports and fitness center, disclosed plans to reduce staffing by 923 positions in the Bay Area. These included 294 jobs in Los Gatos, 255 projects in Pleasanton, and 197 places in Fremont. All these were described as layoffs.

CorePower Yoga, a yoga-themed physical fitness studio, shown it intended to temporarily lay off 430 employees, such as 243 at San Jose and 187 in Palo Alto.

Akima Infrastructure Services, which recruits contract employees for the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, reported to the EDD that it had determined on permanent prices of approximately 500 people in Livermore.

Next week, the state EDD will release the most comprehensive snapshot of the Bay Area market once the state labor agency places the June employment report for California and each of the nation’s metro regions, such as the Bay Area.


Coronavirus Things

5 things to know for July 10: Coronavirus, SCOTUS, China, police, Seoul

Here’s what you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.

    (You can also get “5 Things You Need to Know Today” delivered to your inbox daily. Sign up here.)

    1. Coronavirus

    The US saw another record daily rise in reported Covid-19 cases, with 60,646 yesterday. If the numbers weren’t enough, health experts and local leaders are saying it loud and clear: Parts of the US reopened too fast, and now we’re reaping the consequences. Need proof? It took less than a month, from June into July, for nationwide case numbers to jump from 2 million to 3 million. And no, more testing isn’t to blame. Things are dire in India and Mexico, too. Both countries reached record Covid-19 tallies recently. India has reported 100,000 new cases of the virus in the last five days alone and surpassed Russia to become the third-worst hit nation.

    2. SCOTUS

    The Supreme Court blocked House Democrats from accessing President Trump’s financial records but ruled he is not immune to a subpoena for his financial documents from a New York prosecutor. A CNN legal analyst called it a stinging rebuke of the President, who has repeatedly claimed he’s above the law when it comes to things like subpoenas. However, we almost certainly won’t see any of that tax information before the November election. In the decision, the Supreme Court handed the case back to a lower court. That means it will take a while for anything to manifest, though this could become a big problem for Trump whenever he leaves office.

    3. China

    US State and Treasury departments have slapped sanctions on Chinese officials for their involvement in human rights abuses in the Xinjiang region, where Uyghur Muslims and other minority groups have been detained and tortured. Along with the sanctions, the Trump administration has levied visa restrictions against three Chinese officials, blocking them and their families from entering the US. China says it will be mulling “reciprocal measures.” The country also recently bit back at the US over the prospect of arms control talks. The State Department said it would welcome China to the table to talk about arms control negotiations. But Beijing said it has “no interest” in such an exchange.

    4. Police

    A new round of protests erupted in Salt Lake City after the district attorney there announced that the fatal police shooting of Bernardo Palacios Carbajal in May was justified. In response, Utah’s governor declared a state of emergency through the weekend. Palacios was shot May 23 after officers responded to a report of someone making “threats with a weapon.” The DA concluded their use of force was not unlawful. It’s the latest somber development in the conversation about police accountability and reform. However, a new poll from the Pew Research Center shows a plurality of Americans — 42% — support keeping police funding in their communities the same, rather than decreasing or increasing it.

    5. Seoul

    The mayor of the South Korean capital of Seoul, considered one of the country’s most powerful political figures, has been found dead. Park Won-soon’s body was found on a mountain in a Seoul neighborhood early today, a few hours after his daughter reported him missing. Local police say no suicide note was left behind, and Park’s belongings were found nearby. Asked about a sexual misconduct allegation against Park, a police official confirmed that a legal complaint involving Park had been filed and submitted to police on Wednesday. The 64-year-old civic activist had been Seoul’s mayor since 2011, and was seen as a likely hopeful for liberals in the 2022 presidential elections.


    Dolly Parton, Lil Nas X and others will perform at the first ever virtual GLAAD Media Awards 

    Americans are buying more chocolate during the pandemic, and that’s bad for our waistlines

    European hamster, North Atlantic right whale among newly named critically endangered species 

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    Americans are rapidly shrinking their credit card debt right now 

    Yeah, because we can’t be social. And being social is expensive. 



    That’s how much the rate of kids’ sports- and recreation-related emergency room visits for traumatic brain injuries declined between 2012 and 2018. The dip is attributed to fewer children playing tackle football and more safety limits in the game. 


    “I personally think that the original decisions to name those bases after Confederate generals … were political decisions, and they’re going to be political decisions today.”

    Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley, who said Confederate generals “turned their back on their oath” to the US. During his remarks before the House Armed Service Committee, Milley signaled his willingness to rename bases that have Confederate references



      Everything you ever wanted to know about animal farts 

      Hey, it’s the weekend, OK? (Click here to view.) 

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      Coronavirus Maryland

      Coronavirus in Maryland: Five takeaways from the week

      While many states across the country have had to tighten coronavirus restrictions again due to outbreaks after early efforts to reopen, Maryland has continued to see its metrics stay flat or trend downward.

      On Thursday, the state met a key threshold: two straight weeks of a seven-day average positivity rate below 5%, which the World Health Organization recommends reaching before loosening coronavirus-related restrictions.

      The state’s peak seven-day average positivity rate, in mid-April, was 26.92%. On Thursday, the state reported a rate of 4.53%.

      To keep Marylanders up to date with the week’s most pressing takeaways, here are five key points from The Baltimore Sun’s coronavirus coverage.

      Maryland firms receive more than $10 billion in federal aid

      Since the $521 billion paycheck protection program was launched to curtail job losses in the midst of the pandemic, nearly 5 million loans have been awarded, federal officials reported this week — 81,315 to Maryland businesses and nonprofit organizations.

      Federal officials also released data tracking how many jobs have been bolstered by the program. In Maryland, about 900,000 have been supported by the loans, and about 75% of the state’s small business payroll, according to federal data.

      In Maryland, 86 businesses and nonprofits received loans in the $5 million to $10 million range. Among those were numerous health care companies, as well as financial, legal and other professional firms. Some of the notable businesses receiving loans include McDonogh School in Owings Mills (between $5 million and $10 million); the Archdiocese of Baltimore (between $2 million and $5 million); and Hogan Companies, a real estate group founded by Republican Gov. Larry Hogan (between $150,000 and $350,000)

      Many of Maryland’s elite private schools collected some of the biggest loans offered by the program. Nearly 200 schools in the state have received loans, about a third of which received $1 million or more. In central Maryland, nearly all of the schools with the largest endowments accepted Paycheck Protection Program funding.

      Overall, full-service restaurants represented the industry that received the most most loans, both in number and amount received.

      Hogan orders in-person election for November

      Despite safety concerns from state and local election officials, Gov. Larry Hogan on Wednesday ordered them to run a regular, in-person election with each of the state’s roughly 2,000 precincts open on Election Day.

      Hogan also ordered the State Board of Elections in a letter to mail each voter an application for an absentee ballot for anyone who feels unsafe voting in person because of the coronavirus.

      Hogan, a Republican, said his decision would resolve problems seen in the June 2 primary, which was held mostly by mail.

      “We’re very frustrated with the way the election was handled in the primary by the State Board of Elections and the [Baltimore] city board of elections,” Hogan said. “Mistakes were definitely made, and it was unacceptable and inexcusable that they screwed up so much with respect to getting the ballots out on time and getting them out to everybody.”

      Amy Cruice of the ACLU of Maryland said despite the hiccups with some ballots arriving late or having errors, the primary was a success in terms of voter participation. Turnout was high, with 97% of those who voted doing so via the mailed ballots, she said.

      “We will lose all of the gains we made in the June primary, in terms of being able to give people a safe and accessible way to vote,” said Cruice, who runs the ACLU’s election protection program in Maryland.

      Hogan rejected the suggestions the state elections board, as well as local elections officials. While the board was divided along party lines as to whether the state should send absentee ballot applications (the option Republican appointees favored) or just mail out ballots without waiting for requests (which had the support of the board’s Democrats), members agreed it could not execute a “traditional” election with each of the state’s approximately 2,000 precincts open.

      The appointed Maryland State Board of Elections issued a brief statement saying it will follow Hogan’s orders.

      Local school districts propose reopening plans

      Some public school districts in Central Maryland began to publicly discuss in earnest this week possible options for what school might look like in the fall.

      The Baltimore City school district has proposed relaxing social distancing in schools to as little as 4 feet and requiring face masks for all staff and students when buildings reopen, according to a presentation to staff this week.

      U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines call for schools to maintain 6 feet of distance between desks or chairs when feasible. District leaders said they were proposing “relaxing physical distancing to 4-6 feet to accommodate a greater number of students in-person in school buildings.”

      Masks would be required, and desk shields and dividers — like the ones used at the check-out line in some grocery stores — would be used for students “who may have more difficulty wearing or keeping a mask on during the school day,” such as younger children and those in special education.

      The proposals have raised concerns among school employees, including Baltimore Teachers Union President Diamonté Brown, who said they “should be way more heavily focused on protecting human life, not figuring out how we can get students in school buildings with relaxed social distancing.”

      In Howard County, the board has voted to push back the start of the school year by two weeks. Officials are considering various reopening options, including starting the school year online and transitioning into a hybrid model, and offering a fully digital curriculum for students and staff who wish to opt in.

      Harford County schools have laid out three possible scenarios: all distance learning, a mix of on-site and remote classes, and all in person. Officials said the decision will be dependent on the severity of the pandemic at the time.

      New federal rule creates uncertainty for international students who won’t attend in-person classes

      The Trump administration this week released new guidelines for international students in the U.S., requiring that students taking exclusively online courses at U.S. institutions this fall — a likely scenario for many, as schools develop their reopening plans — will have to return to their home countries.

      The decision, which reversed the policies regarding online coursework that had been in place for the spring and summer semesters due to COVID-19, has left students and schools scrambling for solutions, and answers.

      According to the new federal rule, international students must take “the minimum number of online classes,” but it remains unclear exactly how many classes must be in-person for a student to stay in the country. Many Maryland universities have insinuated they will offer special in-person coursework for international students to keep them in the country.

      The policy has been challenged in federal court by Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

      Prince George’s County, a wealthy Black enclave, not immune to racial disparities of coronavirus

      The coronavirus has run rampant in one of the wealthiest Black enclaves in the nation, Prince George’s County.

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      The county has had a disproportionate amount of the state’s coronavirus deaths, too. More than 650 residents have died of COVID-19, a fifth of the state’s total deaths and second only to more populous Montgomery County.

      Taken as a whole, experts say, the county’s experience reflects the persistence of racial inequities that have left African Americans and other minorities more vulnerable to the virus. Even in higher income and educational brackets, researchers are increasingly finding that racial disparities, such as doctors not taking a Black patient’s symptoms as seriously, take a toll on health.

      “Look at all of the inequities that African Americans face in jobs, in housing, in education, in the criminal justice system, as well as in health care,” said Deneen Richmond, an administrator at Luminis Health, which operates Doctors Community Hospital in Lanham.

      Baltimore Sun Media reporters Emily Opilo, Lorraine Mirabella, Pamela Wood, Alison Knezevich, Christine Condon, Daniel Oyefusi, Jean Marbella, Naomi Harris, Jacob Calvin Meyer and David Anderson contributed to this article.

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      Coronavirus Spots'

      Coronavirus hot spots should pause reopening, not shut down again, Fauci now says

      Coronavirus hot spots should pause reopening, not shut down , Fauci currently says

      States with spiking coronavirus cases nevertheless can comprise them by pausing their reopening processes, instead of shutting down another time, among the nation’s top infectious disease specialists said Thursday.

      Dr. Anthony Fauci’s remarks at an event hosted by The Hill news outlet contrast with that which he said a day before: that states with a critical coronavirus problem”should critically look at shutting down.”

      “Rather than think concerning reverting back down to a complete shutdown, I’d think we will need to acquire the countries pausing in their opening process,” Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told The Hill’s Editor-at-Large Steve Clemons on Thursday.

      Fauci stated the range of individuals the virus impacts — from people that have no symptoms to those who wind up in intensive care or die — makes the pandemic really difficult to get under control.

      “to not be hyperbolic about it it really is the perfect storm and (an) infectious disease and public health person’s worst nightmare. It’s a transmissible virus,” he explained. “The efficacy with which this transmits is so striking.”

      Four countries that accounts for about 50percent of new infections — Arizona, California, Florida and Texas — want to aggressively keep individuals socially distanced, such as by closing bars and preventing crowds, ” he explained.

      “If we could do this consistently, I will tell you, most likely, you’re likely to see a downward curve of those ailments,” Fauci said.

      On Wednesday, Fauci told the Wall Street Journal a second shutdown may be the best move for nations fighting with burgeoning coronavirus cases and hospitalizations.

      “I think any condition that’s having a serious problem, that state should seriously consider shutting down,” Fauci told the paper in a podcast.

      He did say Wednesday that simple steps short of complete economic lockdowns — controlling audiences, wearing masks and doing a better job at physical distancing — would help.

      The country and some states are setting records for moderate daily formally reported cases, ICUs in warm areas are reaching capacity, and most states are seeing spikes, remembering the uncertainty of months ago when the virus first broke out.

      Another health specialist echoed Fauci’s first comment about moment shutdowns.

      “In case you’re not doing the… things we’ve talked about previously to get this outbreak under control, beginning with evaluation and trace… your only solution would be to shut down,” Dr. Ali Khan, former director of the CDC’s public health preparedness office, told CNN’s”New Day” Thursday.

      Increasing case numbers have motivated many states to pause or roll back plans to reopen economies after widespread shutdowns in the spring.

      The US reached more than 3 million coronavirus instances this week, according to information from Johns Hopkins University. At least 33 countries at Thursday morning have observed an upward trend in average daily cases — a rise of 10% — over the previous week.

      Some countries have recently reported alarming speeds at which people are testing positive: 28percent in Arizona; 26% in Texas; and 19% in Florida, according to The Covid Tracking Project.

      Previous recommendations for reopening economies, expressed by the CDC, called for test-positivity rates of no greater than 20percent just to achieve first-phase reopenings, and much less than 10percent to get fuller reopenings.

      The country nevertheless is agreeing with labor losses against the very first stay-at-home orders. Though countless jobs have come back, 18.1 million Americans currently are around continued unemployment claims, meaning that they filed at least two consecutive weeks, the Department of Labor said Thursday.

      And more than 3 million Americans appear to have lost jobs which are not coming back any time soon, economists state .

      where states endure

      Many states are feeling the effects of this Covid-19 surge.

      With 98 coronavirus-related deaths in 1 day, Texas set its record for highest single-day fatality increases Wednesday. The country reported its second greatest amount of daily new instances at 9,979.

      In South Texas’ Brooks County, anybody who is positive for Covid-19 could be arrested if they appear in public, other than to receive medical attention, without first being cleared by the nation’s health services department, the county lawyer stated . The county, with about 7,000 inhabitants, states this week it has 23 busy cases.

      The South Texas Health System’s hospitals have over doubled its usual quantity of ICU beds to take care of an influx in Covid-19 sufferers, Wesley Robinson, the system’s assistant chief nursing officer, said Thursday.

      They have put patients in seminar rooms and surgical cords, Robinson told CNN. At least one at town of Weslaco, of their program’s hospitals, has set up tent outside for coronavirus patients.

      “Everyone is exhausted,” emergency department nurse manager Pablo Laredo said Thursday. “Patients here are extremely ill.”

      The University of Mississippi Medical Center has more patients than rooms, the centre’s vice chancellor said Thursday in a briefing with state health officials.

      Nevertheless, Dr. LouAnn Woodward, stated she does not urge a new statewide shelter-in-place order but does encourage mask-wearing to decrease transmission. “We can’t shelter in place through the whole period of this outbreak,” she explained.

      In Florida, 48 hospitals on Thursday had no more capacity in its intensive care units — down from 56 two days earlier, the state Agency for Health Care Administration said. The group has said ICU beds can be added by hospitals at a surge scenario when necessary.

      Florida on Thursday reported 120 Covid-19 deaths in a day before — a single-day record for the nation.

      Louisiana made excellent strides in handling the virus from June, but the last three weeks has reversed all of that with elevated levels of community spread, a death toll at 3,231 and increased hospitalization, Gov. John Bel Edwards said Wednesday.

      Together with hospitalizations rising and the virus spreading, New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell announced Wednesday that pubs and restaurants will be limited to 25 patrons indoors with pub chairs masks and prohibited demanded.

      California, among the first countries to apply restrictions to stem the spread of this virus and among the slowest to raise themis currently wrestling with a worsening scenario.

      In Los Angeles, coronavirus infection rates are on the upswing, and hospitalization rates have risen to levels not seen since April, Health Director Barbara Ferrer declared in a news conference Wednesday.

      The city is presently in a high level of danger and may get worse in the next week or 2, said Mayor Eric Garcetti. Los Angeles would return to a order Should it reach the threat level, he explained.

      Back to school in query

      As examples and hospitalizations increase, an reply to this question of whether children can go back to college in the autumn gets less clear.

      Fauci, in an interview scheduled to air Friday on Sirius XM Radio, said,”We should attempt and find the schools open,” but he highlighted grade colleges could have different approaches than universities.

      “If you keep kids from school, the unintentional negative ripple impact of consequences can be deep with regard to, what do the parents do, that they then remain from work to look after their children?” Fauci stated, in records released.

      “Therefore, the broad approach would be clearly… paying attention to the safety of the kids, which is obviously paramount, but within the context of doing anything you can to protect the health and the welfare of the children, we need to attempt to find the schools open,” he explained.

      President Donald Trump stated he will pressure governors to reopen schools in the autumn and has threatened to cut federal funding of colleges that don’t reopen.

      The White House has also claimed that the CDC’s guidelines for reopening colleges is overly strict. On Thursday, bureau Director Dr. Robert Redfield said the CDC will not revise its guidelines.

      Rather, added reference files will be offered, Redfield told ABC’s”Good Morning America.”

      There is still mystery surrounding how the virus affects kids. At first experts the virus were not contracting \often and were not affected as severely.

      However a study published in an American Academy of Pediatrics journal found that children did not show the same symptoms of coronavirus as adults and that coronavirus targeted evaluations miss cases in children.

      Guidelines from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend only testing patients with fever, cough and shortness of breath, who traveled to high-risk nations and that came into close contact with somebody with a confirmed instance.

      But the kids who tested positive in the study were admitted to the hospital using apparently unrelated symptoms, including bacterial diseases, appendicitis and inflamed muscles. The researchers say it’s uncertain how large a role coronavirus played within their own illness.

      CNN’s Jeremy Grisham, Melissa Alonso, Kay Jones, Kristen Holmes, Jenn Selva, Pierre Meilhan, Raja Razek and Sarah Moon contributed to this report.

      Subscribe to get the latest fitness & health updates in your inbox every week!

      CNN’s Erica Hill reports on the current spike in coronavirus instances across the United States, particularly in Florida, California and Arizona.


      Coronavirus Pandemic Technology

      The coronavirus pandemic is expanding California’s digital divide

      Kevin Frazier

      A Masters of Public Policy student at the Harvard Kennedy School and JD candidate in the UC Berkeley School of Law, kevin Frazier, uses his spare time to advocate for better authorities.

      More posts by this contributor

      If every California student without a decent internet connection got together and formed a state, it would comprise more residents than Idaho or even Hawaii.

      A total of 1,529,000 K-12 pupils in California don’t have the connectivity necessary for sufficient distance learning.

      Analysis from Common Sense Media also revealed that students lacking sufficient connection commonly lack an adequate device as well. The homework gap that divides people on the side of this divide and those with relations will become a prep chasm without drastic and immediate intervention.

      To raise awareness of the enormity and immediacy of the digital divide, I started No One Left Offline (NOLO) at San Francisco. It’s an all-volunteer nonprofit that’s developing a coalition of Bay Area organizations focused on giving people, seniors and students to high-speed, affordable Internet.

      During the week of July 27, the NOLO coalition will launch the Bridge the Divide campaign to increase 50,000 in capital which will be used to directly pay broadband bills for households on the edge of the digital divide.

      At this point in our reaction to COVID-19, emergency measures have only ceased the homework gap from climbing instead of really shrinking it. That’s precisely why we want a sort of addressing pupils’ lack of apparatus and internet. The digital”haves” should adopt directly covering the broadband invoices and updates required from the”have nots.” This kind of giving is both the best and efficient means of giving every student high-speed net along with a device.

      But a lot of people are conscious of just how dire life can be on the wrong side of this digital divide. That’s why I’m trusting you — as a fellow member of the digital”haves” — will join me in taking a day off(line) on July 17. I’m convinced that it will take a day (or even more) from the electronic dim for more Americans to recognize just how hard it is to flourish, let alone endure, without stable net, a device and a sufficient degree of electronic literacy.

      The increased attention to the digital divide generated by this day off(line) will spur a collective and significant reaction to stopping the formation of a prep chasm.

      Present efforts to shut the assignments gap have been laudable and restricted. For instance, internet service providers (ISPs) deserve praise for taking a voluntary pledge to limit fees, forgive fines and eliminate data caps. But that assurance expired at the end of June, months before college starts and in the center of an expanding economic calamity.

      It’s true that many ISPs are still likely to extraordinary lengths to help those in need — look no further than Verizon donating phones to Miracle Messages to help people experiencing homelessness associate with loved ones. But, these extraordinary measures won’t fully compensate for the fact that hundreds of thousands of Californians are experiencing financial insecurity that is higher . They call for and want a solution for their digital needs — not just voluntary pledges that finish in the center of a pandemic.

      In the same way, many school districts in the Bay Area have quickly loaned hotspots and devices to pupils and families in need. In fact, before COVID-19, the Oakland Unified School District and the 1Million Project were providing hotspots to students in need. These sorts of interventions, though, do not afford pupils on the side of the research gap exactly the chance to develop their literacy as people that have devices to predict net connections and their own sufficient to perform more than just homework.

      Every student deserves a device to call their own and a relationship that enables them to become specialists in securely and smoothly navigating the internet.

      Direct giving is the solution. Financially secure people across the Bay Area may and should”host” internet plans and apparatus for families in need. By sponsoring a family’s high-speed online strategy for a year or more, donors will provide pupils and parents with all the safety they should concentrate on each one the other challenges. What is more, sponsored apparatus would come without strings attached or”used” labels.

      Students would have a totally equipped laptop to phone their own as well as one that didn’t lack essential functionalities, which is common among devices that are donated.

      Due to the internet is a human right, the authorities ought to be solving the homework gap. It hasn’t been up to this job. In the interim, we’ll require a private sector solution. The fantastic news is that we seem up for the endeavor. Based on Fidelity, many charitable donors plan to maintain or increase their giving this year.

      Consider that even 46% of millennials strategy to maximize their philanthropy. Regrettably, 1 inhibitor to lending is that the fact that”many donors don’t feel that they have the information they need to efficiently support efforts” to deal with the ramifications of COVID-19.

      That’s where NOLO along with other digital addition coalitions measure. We’re sounding the bell: the prep gap isn’t currently closing; it to ensure children have devices and the connections they need to thrive. NOLO is also supplying the capacity to act with this data — during its own Bridge the Divide effort, donors will have a opportunity to host broadband invoices for community members served by associations across the Bay Area such as the SF Tech Council, BMAGIC along with the Mission Merchants Association.

      Our collective assignment is creating the homework difference a priority. Our date is nearing. The first job is taking a day off(line) on July 17. The next is donating to the Bridge the Divide effort throughout the week of the 27th.

      Let us get to work.