Nonprofits, Hard-Hit Amid The Coronavirus Pandemic, Ask Congress For Help : Coronavirus Live Updates Nonprofit groups say the nation's charitable sector has been especially hard-hit amid the coronavirus pandemic. Several national groups are calling on Congress for $60 billion in emergency funding.
NPR logo As Economy Struggles, Nonprofits Ask Congress For Help

As Economy Struggles, Nonprofits Ask Congress For Help

The YMCA is among several national groups asking Congress for $60 billion in emergency funding to nonprofit organizations nationwide. Above, a sign hangs on the door of the Schlessmann YMCA in Denver, Colo., on March 16, 2020. David Zalubowski/AP hide caption

toggle caption
David Zalubowski/AP

The YMCA is among several national groups asking Congress for $60 billion in emergency funding to nonprofit organizations nationwide. Above, a sign hangs on the door of the Schlessmann YMCA in Denver, Colo., on March 16, 2020.

David Zalubowski/AP

As members of Congress continue to struggle to agree on terms for an emergency aid package aimed at addressing the financial consequences of the coronavirus pandemic, a coalition of national nonprofit groups is asking lawmakers to do more to help the nation's charities.

Nonprofit groups say the nation's charitable sector is especially hard-hit at this time. Several national groups – among them the United Way, the YMCA and YWCA, and the American Cancer Society – are asking Congress for $60 billion in emergency funding to nonprofit organizations nationwide. They also are requesting additional tax breaks and other incentives meant to encourage charitable contributions, and access to federal small business loans for nonprofits.

"Funding for charitable organizations is going to fall precipitously but the needs in our communities will not," Gary Reedy, CEO of the American Cancer Society and American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, said in a joint statement released by the coalition.

A spokesperson for the United Way said in an email to NPR that the organization is receiving an influx of calls for help as Americans cope with layoffs and other economic challenges brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.

Officials with the YWCA said they're concerned about growing demand for space at domestic violence shelters, which is complicated by the need to respect social distancing guidelines designed to reduce the spread of the virus.

The YWCA surveyed more than 200 member organizations. Of those that responded, more than one third reported an increase in demand for domestic violence services of all kinds, including counseling, and more than half reported an increase in requests for housing and shelter, according to a spokesperson.