Feb 10, 2021 - Economy

Nonprofits in crisis amid the pandemic

Illustration of someone cutting a lifeline.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Nonprofit charitable organizations represent America's third-biggest private employers — and they've been walloped by the pandemic.

The big picture: Nonprofits have shuttered and shed over a million jobs at a time when people and communities need their services the most, according to a National Council of Nonprofits analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

What they're saying: "When you lose a nonprofit job, you’re not only losing that job, but the community is losing a service," says Tim Delaney, president and CEO of the National Council of Nonprofits. "It’s a double whammy."

The big picture: Even though nonprofits were included in the Paycheck Protection Program, those funds have not been enough to save the smaller organizations that focus on small towns or communities, Delaney says.

  • And much of the charitable giving amid the pandemic has flowed to the biggest nonprofits.
  • The category that has suffered most is nonprofits that support the arts.

What's next: It could take nonprofits nearly 18 months after the containment of the virus to get back to pre-pandemic employment levels, according to a Johns Hopkins study.

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