This is a time of global crisis. We are all living through a fast-moving, large-scale disaster that is having extraordinary public health and economic consequences. Here in California, public leaders and private industries took early action to mitigate the effects of COVID-19, putting policies in place to flatten the curve sooner than any other state. And while the full extent of the pandemic has yet to be realized, Californians should feel proud of our state’s ability to assess and respond rapidly to counteract this generational challenge.
The pandemic is touching every aspect of life today. Students, agricultural workers, health care practitioners—all Californians are struggling to adjust to enormous changes in their responsibilities and daily routines. At PPIC, we are thinking about the effects on our state’s most vulnerable populations: seniors living in areas with sparse medical care, children receiving free or reduced price lunches, essential workers struggling to stay above the poverty line.
We are also deeply concerned with what lies ahead. How will our economy—just recently in the longest growth cycle ever recorded—respond in the long term? How can the state improve opportunities for those hardest hit by this crisis? What can we observe, measure, and propose that will help California to rebuild itself efficiently, effectively, and equitably?
PPIC will be delving into these questions as this crisis plays out. For now, in these fluid and rapidly changing times, we are focused on bringing critical facts and information to the table—assessing the state’s economy, people, communities, and environment. Our blog series on COVID-19 provides wide-ranging analyses across key policy areas, from education to health care, from criminal justice to water policy. And the PPIC Statewide Survey will be offering perspectives on the pandemic and the economy from Californians across the state.
For 25 years, PPIC has worked hard to inform and improve public policy in California. 2020 may be one of our most challenging years yet, but we are ready and able to meet that challenge.
I always welcome your comments and suggestions, and especially during this unprecedented time.
President and CEO