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 www.jtgfoundation.org/resources/covid-19 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.

 

NH Governor extends stipend program for frontline healthcare workers

June 23, 2020 – Families

New Hampshire’s weekly stipend program for healthcare workers, which provides an extra $300 for full-time frontline healthcare workers and $150 for those working part-time, was set to expire on June 30. Given the pandemic’s severe impacts on the state’s long-term care facilities, Governor Chris Sununu officially extended the program until July 31. Without this program, it was feared that facilities would worsen existing staff shortages. #covid-19 #workforce

Safety net gaps exposed by COVID are likely to remain salient for other crises

June 23, 2020 – Families

A new post from a Brookings senior fellow Henry J. Aaron highlights gaps in the existing social safety net that were exposed by COVID-19. Aaron suggests that the collective safety net is unprepared to deal with the pandemic, and other emerging global threats. Specifically, the post posits that the government programs responsive to income loss, steady access to health insurance, and ensuring stability of state and local government services are particular weak links in the safety net. #covid-19

The Black LGBTQ community is particularly vulnerable to economic and housing challenges in the pandemic

June 23, 2020 – Families

The pandemic is exacerbating the socioeconomic marginalization that Black LGBTQ communities already face. Even before the pandemic, housing disparities were particularly significant with Black people accounting for 40 percent of those experiencing homelessness despite only comprising 13 percent of the general population. LGBTQ young adults are at double the risk of experiencing homelessness than non-LGBTQ young adults, and Black transgender people experience the most severe economic and housing disparities. During the pandemic, 14 percent of LGBTQ people of color have delayed rent payments (compared to 7 percent of the general population) and will be likely the most impacted by the federal moratorium on evictions ending July 24. #covid-19 #racialequity

Without policy intervention, Social Security benefits will fall due to current recession

June 23, 2020 – Seniors

Researchers at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) argue that policymakers should include a fix in the next COVID-19 relief bill to address decreases in Social Security benefits caused by the current recession. The recent unemployment increase and decrease in annual earnings for many workers will result in a decrease in the economy-wide average wage. Due to the way Social Security benefits are calculated, someone turning 60 in 2020 will receive less in benefits than that same earner would have if they were turning 60 in 2019. This unfair outcome can be avoided by adding a protective Social Security provision. #covid-19

Opioid overdoses increase in New Hampshire and Vermont during the pandemic

June 22, 2020 – Families

Compared to last year, the number of fatal and non-fatal opioid overdoses are considerably higher this year in New Hampshire and Vermont. New Hampshire reports a 30 percent increase in fatal overdoses—42 deaths in April and 45 in May of 2020, compared to 32 in April and 35 in May of 2019. According to the Vermont Department of Health, the number of non-fatal overdoses was almost double in March 2020 what it was in March 2019. Similarly, in Vermont the number of fatal overdoses had been four in March 2019 and eight in April 2019 but jumped to nine and 17 for March and April 2020. Public health officials suggest that anxiety, depression, social isolation, and economic challenges of the pandemic are contributing factors. #covid-19 #mentalhealth

Tribal organizations provide online mental and behavioral health supports

June 22, 2020 – Families

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit U.S. tribal communities hard and both tribal leaders and mental health experts are concerned about the impacts. American Indians and Alaska Natives already suffer from higher rates of suicide, psychological distress, and mental and behavioral health issues than the general population and the pandemic may exacerbate these disparities. In response, Tribal organizations such as the Native Wellness Institute in Oregon have organized online wellness sessions on healing, self-care, and resiliency. #covid-19 #mentalhealth #rural

Rural Vermont and New Hampshire community-based responses effectively protect vulnerable residents

June 21, 2020 – Families

A new report from Dartmouth College on COVID-19 and rural health equity in Northern New England finds that rural Vermont and New Hampshire have responded effectively to the pandemic. The response has been characterized as community-based, consisting of social service organizations and residents collaborating to identify and protect vulnerable populations such as those experiencing homelessness. In this approach, health systems are the last line of defense. However, the region does still face challenges such as limited personal protective equipment, little capacity for testing and contract tracing, and a general shortage of primary care providers. #covid-19 #rural

NACo report summarizes guidance, policies, and best practices in long-term care facilities

June 20, 2020 – Seniors

The National Association of Counties (NACo) published a brief intended to be a comprehensive resource for counties who own and/or operate long-term care facilities. The brief summarizes federal guidance and policies, new federal legislation, data on COVID-19 cases and deaths, and gives local examples of best practices. For example, Linn County, Oregon is highlighted for its successful efforts to expand testing. #covid-19

New report summarizing rural policy recommendations for resilience and recovery

June 20, 2020 – Families

The Rural Voices for Conservation Coalition (RVCC) recently published a new report outlining policy recommendations to support rural economic resilience and recovery. The report has sections on demographics & workforce; economics; wildfire; and infrastructure, connectivity, & access. Each section describes challenges and elevates policy solutions. #covid-19 #rural

Maine Data Glimpse: Pandemic Shift to Remote Learning

June 17, 2020 – Older Youth, Young Children

The U.S. Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey is a unique source of timely data on how households are faring across the United States and in each state during the pandemic. Topics include household income and employment changes, mental health, food insufficiency, and the shift to remote learning. In this data glimpse, we use these new data to explore remote learning shifts in New England and the United States. #covid-19 #education

Public service program in Birmingham provides jobs and supports the community

June 16, 2020 – Families

Birmingham, Alabama Mayor Randall Woodfin created a New Deal-inspired program to hire workers for projects responding to the pandemic. The program, called the Bham Strong Service Corps for Resilient Workers, uses local funds to hire unemployed and underemployed low-income workers. More than 800 people applied to the program and around 250 have already been placed. All the jobs directly address community needs such as disseminating school meals, transporting medical patients to and from treatment, park and trail maintenance, and staffing a call center providing COVID-19 screening. #covid-19 #workforce

Swelling Medicaid enrollment strains state budgets

June 16, 2020 – Families

A new article from Pew Trusts describes the pressure that rising Medicaid enrollment, in response to sweeping job losses, is placing on state budgets. This swell in enrollment is happening while state budgets are already under tremendous pressure from the pandemic. New research shows that Medicaid enrollment has risen through May but lagging data availability mean the pandemic’s full effects are still unknown. The share of Medicaid expenses paid by states varies and is largely linked to personal income levels within the state (range: 22% to 50%), with states paying much lower shares (10%) for beneficiaries eligible through Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act. Options include additional federal support (some has already been provided) or slashing reimbursement rates to Medicaid providers, which will further discourage providers from seeing Medicaid enrollees at a time of critical and expanding inequity in COVID-19 outcomes. #covid-19