The Nonprofit U.I. Relief Coalition today released a statement calling on Congress to get back to work and help nonprofits around the country to get back on their feet.
Citing a study from the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society, the NUIRC said: “Over 1.6 million people who work in the nonprofit industry lost their jobs because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Six hundred thousand of the employees have been able to get back to work, but that still leaves one million people who are still unemployed.”
“These employees work in a variety of different organizations, all of which play a significant role in making America a better place to live. Nonprofits are the third largest employer in the country, and they often do essential work in building sustainable communities. They haven’t fully recovered from mitigation efforts taken by state and local governments, and as a result, our cities, small towns, sprawling suburbs and neighbors, continue to suffer.”
“There has been much talk about bringing Congress back into session to bailout the airlines. That’s all well and good, but until we take care of our local communities, we won’t really be fixing any problems.”
As Neal Denton the Senior Vice President and Chief Government Affairs Officer of the YMCA put it, “While charities are delivering services to vulnerable individuals and families across the nation, we’ve been hit particularly hard by the pandemic with facility closures, declines in donations, and cuts in membership and program revenue and staff reductions. Without additional relief from the Federal Government, nonprofit organizations will be forced to further reduce staff and services, leaving their communities without critical support when they need it more than ever. We urge Congress to continue negotiations and pass Coronavirus relief legislation before the elections.”
NUIRC continued, “We are especially concerned about nonprofits that have been saddled with crippling unemployment insurance (UI) costs. Many of these organizations have been hit with a double whammy. They couldn’t continue to keep their employees on the payroll because of the pandemic, and now they have to pay the UI costs of those laid-off workers, making it impossible for many of these nonprofits to hire them back.”
“What has happened to the airline industry is bad. Laying off 70,000 employees is hard on those employees and hard on the American economy. And what is happening to the nonprofit industry is every bit as devastating and you can make the argument, it is even worse. Both the economic impact and the impact on these organizations’ ability to meet urgent needs are significant to our nation’s recovery.
Daneille Clore, the CEO of the Kentucky Nonprofit Network, said “This issue is significant for Kentucky’s nonprofits, who are an economic engine with payroll exceeding $7.5 billion in annual wages. Some organizations owe as much as $8 million in UI claims, so far. Nonprofits sympathize with all industries suffering just as we are. Ultimately, without relief, many nonprofits will be forced to close their doors. When that happens, essential services for people in need, including unemployed airline workers, will disappear.”
Jon Pratt, the Executive Director of the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits agreed, “The CARES Act was a quick and important response to the COVID pandemic, but when it came to an essential set of charitable employers it cut that relief to 50%. That unfinished business is risking the elimination of a nonprofit workforce that is already modestly compensated, 75% female, and in every U.S. community. It is time for Congress to act.”
501(c) Services is a member of the Nonprofit U.I. Relief Coalition.