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Although the rate of people experiencing homelessness was increasing even before 2020, the Covid-19 pandemic contributed to a further rise in the nation’s unemployment rate. Studies have shown that a one-percent increase in the nation’s unemployment rate could bring an increase in homelessness of 0.065 per every 10,000 people. Unemployment during the pandemic rose to over fourteen percent, meaning that the pandemic will likely precipitate increased levels of homelessness in America. The influx of economic stimulus payments during the pandemic has refocused discussions on the extent to which guaranteed income programs could be used to provide some financial support to Americans experiencing homelessness. Guaranteed income programs provide an unconditional and permanent monthly stipend to recipients.

The pandemic and the decreasing cost of automation is leading to a double-disruption, where companies fast track new technologies to save costs in light of the economic drawback from inactive markets. Generally, Moore’s law provides that the speed, capability, and affordability of computers will double every two years. This implies that the cost of automating many jobs, such as retail checkouts, will be reduced as time progresses.