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Employment and Food in Maryland during the first four months of the COVID-19 pandemic

May 01, 2021
CLF Report

Brianna Bradley, Kaitlyn Harper, Joelle Robinson, Erin Biehl, Roni Neff


CLF Authors

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This brief describes the experiences and perspectives of food insecurity specifically for Maryland residents who experienced job disruption during the first four months of the pandemic, and their households. Job disruption includes being furloughed, having a loss of hours or income, or losing their job. Many disparities were exacerbated during the pandemic, and the disparities between households with and without job disruption will be discussed here. We gathered insights regarding food insecurity from 903 households using the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) 6-item tool, in which respondents who say “yes” to two or more of the six questions are categorized as experiencing food insecurity. In this brief, households are grouped into three categories:

  • Households with food security at the time of the survey, regardless of prior food insecurity status;
  • Households with persistent food insecurity, both in the year before and since the pandemic began;
  • Households with new food insecurity, classified as food secure in the year before the pandemic, but having food insecurity after the pandemic’s start.