Wed. 3/25/20: COVID-19 Daily Update


We know you may still be experiencing challenges with unemployment. The Union has communicated these concerns with the State. If there’s any updated information from the State’s Unemployment Office we will be sure to pass them along.

Please remember that it is your responsibility to check the email account you used to register with the State’s Unemployment office.

If you already completed the initial unemployment registration form utilizing the specific URL designated for Local 5 members, you will be receiving your next set of instructions from the State’s Unemployment Office. Please wait and look out for that email. This will not happen instantaneously as the State is still experiencing an increased volume of applicants.


UNITE HERE Local 5 President Gemma Weinstein has a message for our members as we face the impact of COVID-19. Watch her message here and share it on Facebook.


More than 60,000 have filed for unemployment in Hawaii so far this month (HawaiiNewsNow March 25, 2020)

For the month, over 60,000 people have filed for unemployment.  Here are the figures of initial claims per day over the last week:

March 19: 1,117

March 20: 1,679

March 21: 3,914

March 22: 4,996

March 23: 19,534

March 24: 20,041

Total: 51,281

What’s the coronavirus risk to Hawaii hotel and restaurant workers? Start at $8.7M a day.  (Pacific Business News, March 25, 2020)

According to this analysis, the impact of shelter at home orders in Hawaii for the hotel and restaurant industry is $8.7 million in daily wages and more in tips. Nationally, that’s about $580 million in hotel and restaurant wages plus tips.

A breakdown of Hawaii impacts:

  • Urban Honolulu: $4.5 million in hotel and restaurant wages per day, across more than 58,000 employees
  • Kahului-Wailuku-Lahaina area: More than $2.2 million in hotel and restaurant wages, split between 20,834 workers, could be affected
  • Hilo: $1.1 million in daily wages split among 13,480 employees
  • Kapaa: wages equal more than $895,000, representing the daily pay of 9,169 employees

Major hotels close across the state; job losses mount to more than 40,000 since mid-February (Star Advertiser, March 25, 2020)

On Sunday, 3/22/20, the state’s daily airline passenger counts—which in peak times average about 50,000 passengers a day—had fallen to about 7,000; of those, only about 3,000 were likely visitors.  As of Tuesday, 3/24/20, about 40 hotels have closed or plan to close this week. Hotel executives expect up to 67 closures across Hawaii in near future. Read the article for the full list of hotel closures.

The 14-day quarantine of visitors and returning residents starts tonight (Thu. 3/26/20) at midnight.

‘Some may even die, I don’t know’: Former Wells Fargo CEO wants people to go back to work and ‘see what happens’ (Business Insider, March 25, 2020)

As Trump continues to push for April 12th “return to work,” the CEO of Wells Fargo bank wants people to go back to work even though he knows some may die and we should just “see what happens.”

Workers Are More Valuable Than CEOs (Jacobin, March 2020)

It’s the people who pick up our trash, connect our calls, deliver our food, stock our shelves, and pick our fruit who keep our economy going. When working class people have money (and freedom and time) in their pockets to spend, the economy and everyone benefits.

Corona Cases Roundup

Worldwide: Confirmed Cases: 468k, Deaths: 21k, Recovered: 114k

USA: Confirmed cases: 68k, Deaths: 1,031, Recovered: 593

Hawaii: Confirmed cases: 95 (+6), Deaths: 0 (-1), Hospitalized: 5 (0)

The reported first death was incorrect. We are still at zero deaths in Hawai’i.