A report released Monday by the non-partisan Annie E. Casey Foundation shows how the concurrent health and economic crises are exacerbating disparities in access to basic needs for families.
The report uses data from weekly U.S. Census surveys to show how families are challenged to meet basic needs while managing school, work and mental health. Kim Eckhart with the Children's Defense Fund of Ohio says job and income losses since the start of COVID-19 pandemic has destabilized many families:
The report shows the pandemic has exacerbated racial and ethnic inequities, seven percent of Ohio families lack health insurance and 19 percent feel depressed or hopeless. Eckhart says kids had trouble adjusting to virtual learning and stay-at-home orders. The report offers several suggestions, including improving access to programs such as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, and boosting education spending.