Along with a team of over ten other researchers, I helped document the stories of individuals applying for pandemic unemployment. Our goal was to present these stories in real-time to policy-makers as legislation lay in the hands of congress to continue providing relief to millions. Our interviews were in depth but conversational in nature. During the 2 month research project, we presented weekly research findings on how individuals were coping and navigating relief during the crisis.
In the interviews, we try to answer a few focus questions:
- What’s the living and working situation like, generally, and how are things different during COVID-19?
- Why were they trying to get benefits and how did it go?
- Are they getting help? What kinds? How is it, asking for, getting, and using this help?
- What are they doing to keep things together for themselves and their family?
- What are the big takeaways that the world should know about this story?