High approval for COVID-19 relief package amid concern about job loss

Most Americans continue to express concern about themselves or a household member either losing their job or seeing a reduction in paid work hours in the next few months — or say it has already happened to them.

This includes 24% of those working full- or part-time who are very concerned.

The public overwhelmingly supports the $2 trillion economic relief package passed by Congress: 81% approve overall, a view that crosses partisan lines. However, most (57%) say it won’t end up being enough, including most people who approve of the package overall.

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A majority also expect to see financial assistance for their own family. This comes amid record unemployment numbers and widespread concern about the coronavirus outbreak’s impact on one’s livelihood.


Changing behavior: More staying home under orders

Americans say the financial impact of the coronavirus outbreak will fall more on the middle class and poor than the wealthy, even as they see the health risks from the virus affecting all strata of society equally.

More people report that they’re being more careful about their behavior than before, as more states issue social distancing guidelines: 65% say they only go out when they absolutely have to now — up 10 points from a week ago — and 13% say they aren’t leaving home.

Those who express greater concern that they or a family member will get the virus are more likely to report staying at home, but younger adults, especially the 18-29 group, continue to be more likely than older adults to say they’re living normally, and coming and going as usual.


Most people tell us the same thing they did a week ago about their comings and goings, but a substantial number have become more cautious. For example, of those who told us previously that they’re still going out but being careful, 62% now say they’re either not leaving home or only going out when absolutely necessary.

Three-quarters report being under state or local orders to stay home.


When we ask people what emotions they’ve felt in the past week, positive ones — such as calm and hopeful — continue to outweigh negative ones. However, a third report having felt angry and three in 10 report having felt scared pretty often or all the time — both slightly up from last week. People who are concerned about job loss or a reduction in house are the most likely to say they have often felt nervous and stressed.

This CBS News survey was conducted by YouGov using a nationally representative sample of 2,236 U.S. residents interviewed between March 31 and April 1, 2020. The sample was weighted according to gender, age, race and education based on the American Community Survey, conducted by the U.S. Bureau of the Census, as well as 2016 presidential vote and registration status. The margin of error is +/- 2.4 points.

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