Thu. 4/16: COVID-19 Daily Update


The Census Bureau has started collecting responses to the 2020 Census! It’s important that you all respond to the Census. The Census results are used to determine how many seats each state gets in the House of Representatives, federal funding, and more.

Due to COVID-19, some households haven’t received their invitations yet. If you haven’t received your Census invitation or have questions, join the COVID-19 and Census 2020 radiothon this Sat. 4/18, 10am-12pm on Facebook and the radio. Click here for the flyer with more details.


JOIN US tomorrow (Fri. 4/17) at 5pm for another Facebook Live session! This week, we will be joined by Gracie Esperanza, a Kaiser Permanente worker for 16 years and an active Local 5 leader.

See you tomorrow at 5pm!


WATCH LIVE: Mayor Kirk Caldwell discusses updates to stay-at-home, work-from-home mandate (Hawaii News Now, April 16, 2020)

The Mayor is indicating the island’s stay at home order will likely take a while to slowly unwind. The criteria for lifting restrictions include: the total number of cases must decline and stay down for 14 days, medical providers must have a good supply of PPE, robust contact-tracing mechanism, testing and non-hospital quarantine facilities for mild symptom positive cases, and continued social distancing and face mask wearing.

READ: White House Guidelines for ‘Opening Up America Again’ (CNN, April 16, 2020)

This is the White House’s three-phase plan for localities coming out of lock down. It’s useful to read to understand how stay at home orders might be eased and lifted (under White House suggested guidelines). This is not the same plan as the CDC and FEMA guide to reopening the U.S. that is reportedly still being drafted according to a Washington Post article that provides one part of the CDC/FEMA plan. State governors or city mayors ultimately will decide how easing will take place in their jurisdictions.

In the White House guide, “Gating” is about number of COVID cases and medical capacity criteria being met before lock downs can be eased up in phases. Before phase one can begin, gating criteria must be met in the region first, then the phases start:

Phase 1 people: less than 10 social gatherings, practice social distancing vulnerable people continue to shelter in place,

Phase 1 employers: return to work in phases or telework, close common areas or enforce SD,

Specific Employers: school stay closed, no senior home visits, large venues can operate under strict social distance protocols (restaurants, movies, sporting, churches), some elective surgeries resume, gyms open under social distancing and cleaning guides, bars stay closed.

Phase 2: for regions with no evidence of rebound and met Gating criteria during Phase 1

Phase 2 People: non essential travel can resume

Phase 2 Employers: encourage telework where feasible, close common areas or enforce SD.

Specific Employers:  schools open, no visits to senior cares centers and hospital, large venues operate under moderate social distancing protocols, most elective surgeries resume, bars open with standing room protocols

Phase 3: after regions in phase 2 meet Gating criteria during Phase 2: pretty much back to normal.

More drive-thru testing for new coronavirus coming to multiple locations around Oahu (Star Advertiser, April 16, 2020)

More testing will be available at following locations over next few days on Oahu. Testing is available for those with or without insurance. For more information, contact Kalihi Kai Urgent Care at 841-2273 or Premier Medical Group Hawaii at 304-8816 or 367-6020.

Provided by Kalihi Kai Urgent Care

>> 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Friday, Geiger Community Park, Ewa Beach

Provided by Premier Medical Group Hawaii

>> 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, Polynesian Cultural Center, Laie

>> 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Sunday, Kakaako Waterfront Park

>> 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Monday, Koko Head District Park

>> 9 a.m.-1 p.m Wednesday, The Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-Day Saints, Wahiawa

Unemployment in Hawaii tops 37% as coronavirus shutdown continues (Hawaii News Now, April 16, 2020)

From March 1st to April 16th, 244,330 people in Hawaii have filed for unemployment.

Millionaires to reap 80% of benefit from tax change in US coronavirus stimulus (The Guardian, April 16, 2020)

A Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation released an analysis showing how a CARES Act tax provision will benefit the rich:

  • 43,000 people making $1M/year or more would owe $70.3B less in taxes.
  • Less than 3% of this tax cut benefit will go to American’s making less than $100,000/year.
  • The law allows owners of businesses known as pass-through entities to lower their taxes by deducting as much as they want against income unrelated to the business. Before, owners of pass-through entities could deduct a maximum of $250,000 in losses from non-business income such as stocks and bonds.

Embrace socialism or let corporations fail — America needs to make a choice, NYU professor says (Market Watch, April 16, 2020)

If capitalism is so great, why does it need to be bailed out by socialism every ten years?  Questions arise as to why big businesses can do whatever they want and redistribute profits to the already-wealthy in good times, then get bailed out at taxpayers’ expense during bad times. Why would corporations, as institutions, ever behave responsibly if they know they are too big to fail and will get bailed out as necessary? And if executives and politicians who manipulate the system never go to prison for their actions, what incentives are there to behave responsibly?

COVID Cases Today

World: Cases: Cases: 2.15M (+90k).  Deaths: 144k (+7k)

USA: Cases: 670k (+31k).  Deaths: 33k (+2k).  Total Tested: 3.4M (+200k)

Hawaii: Cases:  541(+11).  Deaths: 9 (+0).  Hospitalized: 45 (+0). Recovered: 374 (+15)