The weekly first-time jobless claims have seen a record low since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic last year. Last week, there were a reported 684,000 weekly jobless claims, a steep decline from the 781,000 claims the week prior.
The latest report of weekly jobless claims is also below financial experts' estimates of 735,000. According to the outlet’s report, continuing jobless claims also saw a decline of 264,000 to 3.87 million.
African Americans and Black women, as well as other people of color, have faced a disproportionate rate of pandemic-era unemployment. Millions of women have left the workforce as the pandemic created a child care crisis and schools work to reopen safely.
Experts are reportedly monitoring the weekly jobless claims as the nation ramps up vaccination efforts to roughly two million doses administered daily.
Equity in the vaccine distribution for Black communities has been an issue the White House COVID-19 Task Force publicly acknowledged, though it remains a challenge.
In addition to providing direct cash payments to individuals and small businesses, the most recent COVID-19 relief package includes funds for revitalizing vaccine appointment sites to improve access and information in an effort to get more Americans vaccinated as the nation continues to push towards reopening.
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