Fair Count’s ‘Pandemic to Prosperity: South’ report highlights 21 indicators showing COVID’s impact on the South

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ATLANTA – The Stacey Abrams-founded groups Fair Count and the Southern Economic Advancement Project (SEAP), in partnership with the National Conference on Citizenship (NCoC), today released the inaugural Pandemic to Prosperity: South report​.

The report highlights 21 indicators of the pandemic’s impact on the South, as well as policy recommendations to move the region from response to recovery. Findings include:

  • The South is experiencing very high levels of COVID risk in this third wave of the pandemic. Even as vaccines roll out to frontline workers, residents in nursing homes, and people above certain age thresholds, the situation remains dire in most communities in the South.
  • Hospitalization rates reveal large disparities between racial groups. As of the first week of December, American Indian/Alaska Native, Black, and Hispanic individuals are 1.5 to 2 times more likely to have severe COVID impacts than white people across the U.S.
  • Women have disproportionately suffered COVID-related job losses. Across the South, 1.3 million jobs have disappeared in the past year, and women in the workforce have lost jobs at a higher rate than men.
  • In each Southern state, at least 1 in 5 small businesses are now closed. Latinx-owned businesses were roughly twice as likely as white-owned businesses to have closed and Black-owned businesses were about 2.5 times as likely to have closed by April.
  • Many Southern states saw significant increases in total ballots cast in the 2020 election. The most notable increases occurred in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and Virginia. Still, a large number of eligible voters from each Southern state did not participate.​

Pandemic to Prosperity: South builds on data gathered for the NCoC’s national Pandemic to Prosperity project, a trusted, relevant and highly-curated source of data that presents the disparate health and the economic impacts the COVID-19 pandemic has had on specific populations across the US. Pandemic to Prosperity: South aims to provide insights on how the South is performing compared to the rest of the nation, looking ultimately to inspire groundbreaking solutions to entrenched problems that lead the way for the nation as a whole.


Link to report

Read and download the full report HERE.

January 22 briefing

Watch the briefing, with special guest Stacey Abrams, HERE.

About Fair Count

Founded by Stacey Abrams in 2019 and anchored in Georgia, Fair Count works to build long-term power in communities that have been historically undercounted in the decennial census, underrepresented at the polls, and whose communities are often torn apart in redistricting. FairCount.org

About the Southern Economic Advancement Project

SEAP works to broaden economic power and build a more equitable future, exploring policies designed to directly address the intersection of race, class and gender with social and economic policy in the South. Focusing on 12 Southern states and marginalized/vulnerable populations within the region, SEAP also amplifies the efforts of existing organizations and networks that work toward similar goals. The organization is a fiscally sponsored project of the Roosevelt Institute. TheSEAP.org

About the National Conference on Citizenship

The NCoC is dedicated to strengthening civic life in America, pursuing its mission through a nationwide network of partners involved in a cutting-edge civic health initiative, cross-sector conferences and engagement with a broad spectrum of individuals and organizations interested in utilizing civic engagement principles and practices to enhance their work. NCoC.org


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