Resource Library

COVID-19 Update: The John T. Gorman Foundation is curating a list of resources, emerging best practices, and innovative ideas from across the country to help local organizations serve vulnerable Mainers during the coronavirus outbreak. To access those resources, visit or enter Covid-19 in the keyword search. Those results can be further focused by using the “Filter by” menu above to filter by population type (Young Children, Older Youth, Families, and Seniors) or by clicking the following links: childcare, education, food security, housing, rural areas, and workforce.

The John T. Gorman Foundation strives to be data-driven and results based and seeks to promote information and ideas that advance greater understanding of issues related to our mission and priorities. In our effort to promote these values, we offer these research and best practice resources collected from reputable sources across the country. The library also includes briefs and reports the Foundation has commissioned or supported, a listing of which can be found here.


Two policy opportunities to improve the re-entry system for returning citizens

June 8, 2021 – Families

The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities notes that the American Jobs Plan and American Families Plan each offer policy opportunities to support incarcerated people’s re-entry into communities. Given the substantial evidence that re-entry is complicated by insufficient supports, legal barriers, and discrimination, these policies offer a chance to improve those support systems and reduce risks of re-incarceration. #covid-19 #racialequity #foodsecurity #workforce

Vermont continues efforts to lure movers and support the unemployed

June 2, 2021 – Families

To support workforce development, Vermont Governor Phil Scott has extended 2018 legislation offering financial incentives for workers to move to Vermont; also included in the legislation was an increase to state unemployment benefits. The efforts are funded by an increase to unemployment insurance tax on businesses expected to bring $100 million in revenue over the next few years. #covid-19 #workforce

Pandemic-related stress felt by moms can trickle down to their kids

May 27, 2021 – Families, Young Children

Data from the Rapid Assessment of Pandemic Impact on Development – Early Childhood revealed that widespread job loss and increased emotional strain has impacted mothers and young children. On top of job loss, mothers have experienced higher levels of anxiety, depression, stress, and loneliness that has influenced their children’s levels of emotional distress, leading to anxiety, fear, and worry among young children. All of this has been compounded by caregivers having a lower capacity to reduce their children’s stress levels or protect them from distress. Despite these findings, unemployed mothers were still able to care for children with the help of aid, such as unemployment insurance and stimulus payments. #covid-19 #workforce #racialequity #mentalhealth

How 2 efforts that emerged during the pandemic are changing with the times

May 26, 2021 – Older Youth

The Center for Research on College-Workforce Transitions at the University of Wisconsin-Madison analyzed the impact of two young-adult work and education programs during the pandemic. Intern From Home, a student-developed program that links peers to virtual internship opportunities ensures students who would otherwise be unable to access or accept summer internships are connected to virtual opportunities. The second program is the pre-established Global Citizen Year immersive abroad program. By shifting to a virtual cultural immersion during the pandemic, Global Citizen Year has been able to reach hundreds of additional students and has reduced attendance costs. #covid-19 #education #workforce

Workers Not Receiving Mental Health Support During COVID

April 30, 2021 – General

Homebound workers and those out serving the public have struggled to keep their emotional equilibrium during a traumatic year of mass disease and death. Long work hours, tiring videoconference calls and tense mask wars have added to the stress. Their mental health is a growing issue for employers — who have not historically been of much help. Now, with more people heading back to their workplaces, companies need to make profound changes in how they approach employees' psychological and emotional well being, advocates say. #covid-19 #workforce #mentalhealth

Fed summarizes research linking income and wage increases with better long-term child and family outcomes

April 21, 2021 – Families

To identify links between income increases and long-term family outcomes, the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston reviewed a set of quasi-experimental efforts (“natural experiments”) that increased wages and income for low-income people. The review finds that policy interventions that increase income— whether through a higher minimum wage or enhanced transfer payments—have a causal relationship with children’s educational and health development downstream. Some evidence also connects higher income and improved adult stress and mental health; the research on income hikes reducing recidivism and crime is promising, but not robust. #workforce #racialequity #covid-19

Employment recovery has been uneven for youth by race-ethnicity and place

April 15, 2021 – Older Youth

A publication from Mathematica examines youth unemployment in 2020, finding that recovery has varied substantially by race-ethnicity and geography. In April 2020, the unemployment rate for young people ages 16-24 was more than double that of adults ages 25-54 (26.9 percent and 12.6 percent, respectively). While youth unemployment rates fell after the April 2020 peak, ending the year at 12.5 percent (versus 8.4 percent in December 2019), the pace of this recovery varied. Unemployment among white male youth declined earlier and faster than among youth of color, while rates among Black, Asian, and Latinx youth hovered near 20 percent until October. The authors attribute this in part to the types of job youth workers typically hold, and emphasize the importance of creating job opportunities quickly, so youth do not suffer scarred employment trajectories in the years to come. #covid-19 #workforce #racialequity

Breadwinning Mothers Are Critical to Families’ Economic Security

March 29, 2021 – General

Building upon the groundbreaking research on breadwinning mothers from the Center for American Progress, this update explores the important economic role working mothers played in supporting their families in the five years leading up to 2020 and offers a glimpse at what is at stake if conditions do not improve—and quickly—for families during the ongoing economic recovery. #covid-19 #workforce

Building an Equitable Recovery Requires Investing in Children, Supporting Workers, and Expanding Health Coverage

March 24, 2021 – General

The pandemic and its economic fallout have exposed glaring weaknesses in our nation’s economy that leave millions of people unprotected in bad economic times and prevent them from fully benefiting from a strong economy in good times. The recovery legislation that policymakers will consider later this year provides a historic opportunity to build toward an equitable recovery where all children can reach their full potential, where workers in low-paid jobs and those with fewer job prospects have the supports to help them meet their needs and get ahead, and where everyone has access to affordable health coverage. Achieving these goals requires attacking long-standing disparities in our nation, deeply rooted in racism and discrimination, that have led to starkly unequal opportunities and outcomes in education, employment, health, and housing. #covid-19 #economy #racialequity #workforce #education #housing

Health Affairs summarizes current landscape of philanthropy in long-term care services

March 21, 2021 – Families, Seniors

On their GrantWatch blog, Health Affairs published an overview of current philanthropy efforts in long-term care services, particularly to meet pandemic-era challenges and ongoing financing questions. Among recently-funded grants, the Tufts Health Plan Foundation is highlighted for awarding a large grant to Community Catalyst to engage older adults and family caregivers in the policy process and discussion of reforming the long-term services and supports (LTSS) system in Massachusetts. Newly published work is also featured, including a detailed report from PHI about the direct care workforce. A key recommendation in the PHI report is that both public and private sectors will need to invest significantly in improving direct care job quality and compensation in order to be able to recruit and retain sufficient workers for the growing service demand. Additionally, a new policy tool from AARP provides state scorecards measuring the performance of LTSS systems in each state. #covid-19 #workforce

Research characterizes new “risk divide” and class sentiments in the pandemic economy

March 21, 2021 – Families

In collaboration with the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, the Stanford Center on Poverty and Inequality has produced a report sharing some results from the American Voices Project (AVP). The AVP is a national research project that employs both qualitative and quantitative methods to understand life in the United States. This piece specifically focuses the changing nature of work during the pandemic and the new “risk divide” between remote workers—with fewer health and economic risks—and face-to-face workers with much greater health and economic risks. Amidst these changes, authors explore class relations and class sentiments expressed in AVP interviews in April through August 2020. While the authors expected inter-worker conflict and resentment from face-to-face workers, findings did not align with this “class conflict” story. Instead, the researchers characterized face-to-face worker sentiments as primarily falling into one of three “gazes”—a compassionate “downward gaze” that acknowledges that others are also suffering, an “inward gaze” focused on self-protective strategies and fortitude, and an “outward gaze” based on a recognition that this crisis requires everyone to ban together. #covid-19 #workforce

Policy strategies to support and encourage older adults’ return to the workforce

March 12, 2021 – Seniors

Alongside pandemic-era job losses, workers have also left the labor force all together, including for safety concerns, inability to find work, insufficient child care, and other caregiving responsibilities. Adults age 65 or older represent a disproportionate share of those exiting the workforce, with more older adults leaving the labor force in 2020 than in any year since the Bureau of Labor Statistics began tracking in 1948. Many older adults who remain in the labor force have struggled with unemployment, reflecting that it typically takes older workers longer to find new jobs. Experts at the Urban Institute propose some ways that policymakers can support and encourage older adults to return to the workforce, including by funding dedicated supports for older job hunters through American Job Centers. Another strategy—especially relevant during the pandemic—is making workplaces safer, including regulating and enforcing COVID-19 vaccination and preventative measures. Finally, authors suggest that federal laws preventing age discrimination in the workplace be strengthened. #covid-19 #workforce