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L.A. Needs More Help during COVID-19 Pandemic; Public Officials distinguish Available Resources
By Betti Halsell, Contributing Writer
Published April 10, 2020

Thursday, April 9. New updates came from L.A. Officials; They discussed the need for assistance surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. L.A. residents feel the hemorrhages within their financial stability, city officials due their best to respond and provide innovative measures to keep the city infrastructure and monetary economy together. With restricting health orders in place, government and county assistance are seeing a drastic increase of applicants and families needing assistance. The L.A. Emergency Operations Center provided information on what resources are available in Los Angeles.

Due to the public order closing non-essential businesses, there’s been a dramatic rise in request for county and government assistance. Many Americans are unable to work because of the contagious spread of COVID-19. There has been a 370% jump in unemployment insurance claims processed from the week prior. That is a total of 880,000 people applying for unemployment.  Meals provided to senior citizens have jumped from 70% from February to March.

Food Pantry needs have raised 200%. The food assistance system, CALFresh has seen an increase of 38% with nearly 70,000 applications in March. CALWorks, the state job assistance program, has seen an increase of 32%. The County’s breath stabilization unit received 1,300 inquiries, related to constituents being affected by COVID-19. The county established an eviction moratorium, to keep people in their homes as their financial status are in flux. Those who are unable to pay their rent, will have up to six months to re-pay past fees. It is highly recommended that there is a payment plan worked out with tenants and property owners.

Barbara Ferrer, PhD, MPH, MEd, Director, Public Health (screenshot)

Barbara Ferrer, Director of Public Health shared the latest data surrounding the COVID-19 Virus. As of April 9. there were 25 additional deaths. This brings the total COVID-19 related deaths in the L.A. County to 223. Barbara disclosed as of Thursday, April 9. There are 425 new COVID-19 reports, in summary there is a total amount of 7,955 cases in the Los Angeles region.

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Over the last 48 hours, there has been 1,045 reports. These numbers reflect 287 positive cases in Long Beach and 94 COVID-19 reports coming from Pasadena. Of these new cases, 20 individuals who have tested positive are unsheltered. One of the staff members from a shelter has also passed away, due to the coronavirus. Approximately 24% of those infected with COVID-19 are hospitalized at some point. Updated statistics is reflecting 2.8% of carriers of the coronavirus have died, which is higher than the general mortality rate for influenza related deaths in the United States. There has been no updated research on mortality rate among specific ethnicities, but the L.A. County Health Department is looking to unearth more related findings.

Joseph Nicchitta, Director, Consumer and Business Affairs (screenshot)

Joseph Nicchitta, Director of Consumer and Business Affairs disclosed there is a motion among the county official table, detailing a relief fund for small businesses. The goal for the Department of Consumer and Business Affairs is to provide timely and accurate information. This level of office is looking to cover multiple tiers of business, such as the “Gig” economy and business owners where English is their secondary language. As of March 26. There is a central hub for information, The Business and Worker Disaster Health Center. Assistance from established business personnel directly from the Department of Consumer and Business, and other public departments are available within that function to assist those in need. Collectively there are nine languages available within this central hub. The Emergency Operations Center are pulling together federal and local aid to support the fragile immune system of our economy.

Categories: COVID-19 | Health | Local | News
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