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Reducing the economic impact of the crisis

To the editor:

A good number of people will be home, not being able to work their normal job due to the virus crisis. Examples: clothing store employees, toy store employees and tutors for grade school kids (who are often self-employed) and so on just to name a few.

Many of the unemployeed at home will have their kids home with them and that can be a full time job and challenge in itself. I am reading the impact on our economy might be worse than anything in recent memory.

To mitigate such an impact could the following work: offer online courses and online work. For example we have outsourced virtually all our telephone and online call center work to foreign nations. Why can’t people do this from home? You might think how can this work when the employeer and employee might never meet face to face. How many Facebook pages are maintained by admins and such who never meet? It is possible to learn IT / “computers” all online and totally master any computer programming language with enough practice.

You might ask “what about technical questions as you’re learning?” The internet is chock full of geeks/nerds/techies who just love to help with any thing related to learning and to teach ad nauseum.

I read that nursing students may be pulled in during the coming crisis to give real world care: can we let that be part or all of their time consuming clinicals so they are not behind with their education? Wanna start a certificate/degree in biology or accounting? This might be an opportunity to do so. Many of our grade school kids are home doing class work the teachers give them online: granted this is not the same as being in a classroom but a lot might be covered during this emergency.

The point here is this might be an opportunity for some (if they can) to not be idle and still remain employed or advance their education. I don’t know all the details of course but the feasibility has been validated already (the call center and Facebook examples alone, not to mention all the You Tube learning videos and online schools available).

Maybe there are some people who love to be “on the road” and drive their cars: could a local grocery delivery business be set up, especially to deliver to the elderly and infirmed or those stuck in the house with small kids and no one to watch them.

For those who have the reality of having their kids home 24/7 for who knows how long: the “work” need not be an 8-hour day.

My point is there are a lot of ideas that pop up here: All might work to blunting the impact on the economy, potentially bringing jobs back to the USA and helping people who are laid off due to the virus (many of who had lower paying jobs) to advance them selves.

Just a thought.

Ira Weinberg

Saranac Lake

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