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Half of Chicago households report having serious financial problems during pandemic, poll finds

Half of Chicago’s households surveyed in a recent poll reported having serious financial problems due to the economic downturn the pandemic has spawned.

Half of Chicago’s households surveyed in a recent poll reported having serious financial problems due to the economic downturn from the coronavirus pandemic.
AP photo

The coronavirus pandemic has had a devastating effect on the nation’s economy, with half of Chicago households surveyed in a recent poll reporting they’re facing serious financial problems because of it. More than half of Black and Latino families surveyed said they were particularly hard-hit.

That’s according to a new poll, published Wednesday, by NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. The poll, which was conducted from July 1 through Aug. 3, received responses from more than 3,400 people in four major U.S. cities, including 529 adults living in Chicago.

During the pandemic, many Chicagoans have experienced job or wage losses, which has made it difficult to make ends meet.

As a result, more than 1 in 3 Chicagoans report using up all or most of their savings, according to the poll. Still, many have fallen behind in rent and mortgage payments, with 1 in 4 Chicagoans reportedly having trouble paying their rent or mortgages. And about 20% of people reported skipping or delaying major bill payments to ensure everyone had food to eat.

Many of the financial problems are concentrated among Black and Latino families in Chicago, with the poll finding that 69% of Black households and 63% of Latino households reported having serious financial problems. That can also be said for 59% of households with an annual income below $100,000, according to the poll.

Chicago reflects a larger trend in this poll, which found that more than half of the surveyed households in New York City, Houston and Los Angeles also said they faced financial problems due to the pandemic. Likewise, more than half of Black and Latino households in each surveyed city were reported serious financial problems since the start of the coronavirus outbreak.

Read the full report below: