Commonwealth Policy Center

Gov. Beshear secured the Accounting firm Ernst and Young to help tens of thousands of Kentuckians get their first unemployment check. Some have waited since March. Besides the hardships on 900,000 Kentuckians who couldn’t work due to the governor’s shutdown of large parts of the economy, other Kentuckians have suffered as well. There’s been a huge spike in drug overdose deaths, a spike in calls to the suicide hotline, an increase in domestic and child abuse cases, and overall mental health has declined. Shelter at home orders were intended to save lives and slow the spread of COVID-19. It’s becoming clear that the blanket approach to slowing COVID has been overkill for most of the Commonwealth and for many Kentuckians, the cure has been far worse than the disease.