COVID-19

“It’s turned from one need to another”

Maria Hollenhorst Jan 8, 2021
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Veronica Coon, of Henderson, Nevada, created Barter Group — Southern NV on Facebook back in March.
COVID-19

“It’s turned from one need to another”

Maria Hollenhorst Jan 8, 2021
Heard on:
Veronica Coon, of Henderson, Nevada, created Barter Group — Southern NV on Facebook back in March.
HTML EMBED:
COPY

My Economy” tells the story of the new economic normal through the eyes of people trying to make it, because we know the only numbers that really matter are the ones in your economy.

“This group is for people who need things,” reads the About info on the Facebook page of Barter Group — Southern NV.  

Veronica Coon, a hairdresser in Henderson, Nevada, started the group back in March to help people find hand sanitizer, cleaning supplies and other products in high demand. But as the pandemic drags on, the things that people need have changed. 

Early on in the pandemic, Coon said hand sanitizer, sanitizing wipes and toilet paper were the most requested items. Later in the year, she said many people traded or gave away personal home goods like patio furniture.

In December, she said many people came to the group looking for holiday gifts for their kids. Others shared information on rental assistance, unemployment benefits and food banks. “It’s turned from one need to another,” said Coon. 

When she first started the group, Coon said she didn’t know how long it would be active. She soon realized however, that it could serve a vital purpose in her community, even after the pandemic ends. 

“I don’t plan on ever closing the group down just because COVID stops,” she said. “Because there’s always going to be people [who don’t have] the cash to meet their needs.”

Coon said she’s also been happy to see more barter groups pop up around the country. “It helps the whole community when you have more than one place for people to turn,” she said. “That’s necessary, even not in a pandemic.”

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COVID-19 Economy FAQs

Millions of Americans are unemployed, but businesses say they are having trouble hiring. Why?

This economic crisis is unusual compared to traditional recessions, according to Daniel Zhao, senior economist with Glassdoor. “Many workers are still sitting out of the labor force because of health concerns or child care needs, and that makes it tough to find workers regardless of what you’re doing with wages or benefits,” Zhao said. “An extra dollar an hour isn’t going to make a cashier with preexisting conditions feel that it’s safe to return to work.” This can be seen in the restaurant industry: Some workers have quit or are reluctant to apply because of COVID-19 concerns, low pay, meager benefits and the stress that comes with a fast-paced, demanding job. Restaurants have been willing to offer signing bonuses and temporary wage increases. One McDonald’s is even paying people $50 just to interview.

Could waiving patents increase the global supply of COVID-19 vaccines?

India and South Africa have introduced a proposal to temporarily suspend patents on COVID-19 vaccines. Backers of the plan say it would increase the supply of vaccines around the world by allowing more countries to produce them. Skeptics say it’s not that simple. There’s now enough supply in the U.S that any adult who wants a shot should be able to get one soon. That reality is years away for most other countries. More than 100 countries have backed the proposal to temporarily waive COVID-19 vaccine patents. The U.S isn’t one of them, but the White House has said it’s considering the idea.

Can businesses deny you entry if you don’t have a vaccine passport?

As more Americans get vaccinated against COVID-19 and the economy continues reopening, some businesses are requiring proof of vaccination to enter their premises. The concept of a vaccine passport has raised ethical questions about data privacy and potential discrimination against the unvaccinated. However, legal experts say businesses have the right to deny entrance to those who can’t show proof.

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