COVID unemployment checks end, leaving Bay Area jobless high and dry

As the federal government shuts down its COVID unemployment programs, Marcel White faces a big problem — he still has no job to return to.

While restaurants, bars and other businesses are recovering, people remain wary of packing into convention halls for the type of events that drove White’s income. The 40-year-old audio-video technician who worked trade shows, concerts and corporate events in San Francisco, hasn’t had steady employment since the pandemic began, he said.

For the past year and a half, federal unemployment benefits have helped keep people like White afloat amid the ruins of the COVID-ravaged economy. Those protections came to a crashing halt Saturday. That means White’s income

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