“Anybody who’s lost their job, I don’t think, views it as a gift, no matter the reason,” said Maine Center for Economic Policy Executive Director Garrett Martin. He said the boost is helping families with job losses to keep paying their rent or mortgage.
He pointed to a Federal Reserve Bank of Boston study that found one-fifth of homeowners and more than one-third of renters in New England were at risk of not being able to pay for their housing before the unemployment expansion and direct payments provided by federal coronavirus emergency aid.
“In this moment, we should be doing everything we can to support families and make sure they can adhere to public health guidance and that we can do so without significant economic disruption,” Martin said. “People have lost their jobs through no fault of their own, but in fact because they are practicing social distancing.”