With thousands of people typing the hashtag, #GeneralStrike trended on Twitter last night. But what does it mean? In light of Congress ending session without passing a Covid relief bill, frustrated citizens turned to social media to organize a strike scheduled for September 1st. Since March, unemployment claims have been well over a million weekly. Most recently, over 900,000 U.S. citizens filed for unemployment last week. Eviction moratoriums have ended in many cities in the country, leaving many people houseless.
According to The Hill, Wednesday, August 12 saw the highest number of reported Covid deaths over the last several months. The backdrop to this includes months-long protests against police brutality in the wake of the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Tony McDade, all of whom were murdered by police.
As millions of citizens across the country grapple with unemployment, lack of medical insurance, and evictions, all while in the middle of a year-long pandemic thus far—billions of dollars in aid has gone to corporations instead of people. Citizens who received unemployment benefits have earned roughly $9,600 over a four month period in addition to a stimulus check. Still, there are people who fall through the cracks which makes them ineligible for unemployment benefits.