May 4, 2021


Gig workers fear carjacking, other violence amid spike in crimes

Just before Christmas last year, Willy Solis, a 42-year-old residential construction worker-turned-delivery driver, was hired to take a late-night $100 bottle of cognac to an apartment complex in Denton, Texas. Once Solis found the apartment, he met a stocky man who gave a name that not only didn’t match the ID he showed, but it also wasn’t the name of the person who placed the order. Confused, Solis called Instacart’s phone support line.

Solis said that that angered the customer and his three male friends and that they ordered him to hand over the cognac. Even though he had qualms

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A struggle to find workers for small businesses

According to the Department of Employment and Workforce, there are 85,000 job openings in the state.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — If your a small business owner in South Carolina you’re probably feeling as if its just one thing after another these days. 

With some small businesses closing or “pausing” because of the pandemic in the last year and now as more people get vaccinated and are venturing out, those same small businesses are struggling to find workers. 

Experts say those in the hospitality industry are being hit the hardest.

Beginning with restaurant owners. 

 As Melissa Harden a manager at Burger Tavern

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Some business owners say they’re hurting due to lack of workers

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — “Help wanted!”

It’s a sign more service oriented businesses are posting ,as things slowly return to some kind of normalcy. Restaurants especially are feeling the pinch from a lack of either qualified or eager applicants.

“Everyone from servers to dishwashers to line-cooks to fry-cooks, they’re all needed. But people are not willing to work,” Robin Joyce said.

Joyce is the owner of “By the brewery” in Downtown Memphis. She says she is frustrated her business, just a few days old, is shut down because she doesn’t have enough staff.

“We ended up having to shut on Saturday

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Covid Turns Chaplains Into Personal Shoppers for Cargo Ship Workers

Cora DiDomenico has worked as a chaplain for three years at the International Seafarers’ Center in Port Newark, N.J., visiting with cargo ships’ crews from around the world.

It’s an unusual job. But thanks to the pandemic, her role has expanded to include a quirky dimension: seafarers’ personal shopper.

Precious cargo

Last week, the chaplain, armed with shopping bags from

Best Buy

and Target, climbed the long gangway to the deck of a 558-foot fruit-juice tanker where she was promptly swarmed by a half-dozen eager mariners in fluorescent coveralls. The ship travels between New Jersey and Brazil, with many crew

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Unemployed workers are hit with another shock: Many owe the government money for health insurance

According to the federal government, Ryan earned too much money on unemployment. It was more money than she would have made working as a preschool teacher, and it bumped her into a different income bracket that reduced her Affordable Care Act insurance subsidy. She’s desperate to keep health insurance in the middle of the pandemic and is trying to figure out how to pay the hefty bill.

“Where do I come up with all of this money to pay them back during the pandemic?” said Ryan, 50, who lives in Bergen County, N.J. “What did they expect us to do?

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Self-employed, gig workers still waiting on PPP rules for bigger loans

Virojt Changyencham | Moment | Getty Images

The self-employed and gig workers are anxiously waiting for the Small Business Association to update guidelines to its Paycheck Protection Program, which could mean bigger loans for the group.

The Biden administration announced last week changes to how the SBA will calculate forgivable loans for sole proprietors and other small businesses without any employees. The updated formula — which will likely lead to larger loan amounts for non-employer firms, including sole proprietors and independent contractors — will be announced this week.

It’s still unclear when in the week the SBA will update its

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