For immigrants and the undocumented, the economic causalities stemming from the spread of the new coronavirus are numerous, but the safety nets compared to citizens may be fewer.
Donna Lovato , executive director of El Comité de Longmont, said her staff has been making dozens of calls each day to check in on local immigrants and make sure they’re finding resources needed to help them survive in the wake of mass layoffs caused by numerous businesses shutting down to curb the spread of the virus.
El Comité is a nonprofit, which works to educate and promote social justice for local immigrants and roughly 1,600 people use its services.
Lovato said, like many Americans, a number of those 1,600 have lost their jobs and are facing uncertain times ahead. Over the course of the week ending March 21, roughly 3.3 million people across the nation filed for unemployment, according to the Denver Post. In Colorado, unemployment rates have continued to climb. Between Monday and Thursday last week, the state labor department took 61,000 new applications for unemployment, the Denver Post reported.
Last week, President Donald Trump signed a stimulus package in an effort to provide financial relief to individuals and businesses. Every person with a valid social security number is expected to get a check. Those who make $75,000 could receive $1,200.
Lovato said El Comité doesn’t ask each person they serve whether they are undocumented. However, in their daily phones calls, she said staff noted a number of people who said they can’t apply for unemployment and won’t receive stimulus package money, indicating they may be undocumented.
“What we are finding is some of our immigrant community doesn’t qualify for unemployment, because they’re undocumented,” Lovato said.
At Padres & Jóvenes Unidos in Denver, Oscar Juarez , spokesperson for the multi-issue organization which advocates for immigrants’ rights, has said the roughly 800 people they work with across the…
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