The Labor Department said Thursday over 6.6 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits over the past week, as the pace and scale of U.S. job losses is set to rival the Great Depression. Officially, 17 million Americans — or 10% of the U.S. workforce — have filed for unemployment benefit in just three weeks, though that statistic doesn’t count immigrant workers or millions more who’ve tried and failed to file claims while state labor departments buckle under a tsunami of paperwork.
Around the U.S., food pantries are reporting record demand even as donations have fallen precipitously. One pop-up pantry in the Van Nuys neighborhood of Los Angeles Thursday drew a mile-long line of cars.
On Capitol Hill, senators failed to agree Thursday on a new round of coronavirus relief. Democrats objected to a Republican effort to increase funding for a small business loan program by a quarter-trillion dollars. They’re instead demanding a more expansive stimulus bill, with federal aid for hospitals and more assistance for state and local governments.