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The impact COVID-19 has on today’s working teens


From janitors to grocery store workers, the importance of these front-line occupations has come to the surface during this pandemic. According to Trading Economics, unemployment has hit an all-time high of 14.7%  in the United States. In January of 2020, it was at 3.6%, which was before the COVID-19 pandemic left many unemployed. As essential businesses remain open, teens are putting themselves on the front line to help out. 

According to CNBC, 35% of teens between the ages of 16-19 have a job. This estimate was taken in 2016 before COVID-19. Those numbers show that several teens work and many depend on work for their income. For those that are working, COVID-19 has had an impact especially on essential business employees. Josh Klein, sophomore, started working at his local Kings Soopers in early March, before the pandemic hit. “Since quarantine, work has been really busy and we are doing everything we can to keep everything clean and safe,” said Klein. 

This essential worker is an example of the new normal when it comes to working on the front line. Photo courtesy of Alex Stemplewski

Not only is working dangerous right now with the risk of infection, but it can also be dangerous for those you come home to.“ I keep myself safe by wearing a mask and gloves, washing everything when I get home and taking a shower,” said Klein. 

As for the 65% of unemployed teens, some are looking for jobs.“ I am planning on soon working at Kings Soopers in the e-commerce department,” said Lana Robison, sophomore. The e-commerce department is the activity of electronically buying or selling products.  ”I decided to work there because I want to be helpful, especially during a time like this and I also felt the need to contribute.” 

With some states partially reopening, including Colorado, teens may be able to go back to work and keep fighting this fight. Klein said, “It’s hard right now but by staying positive and safe, we can get through it.”

Amalia Sanmillan, Staff Reporter

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The impact COVID-19 has on today’s working teens