The vast majority of New Yorkers polled say the coronavirus pandemic has upended their lives in either a somewhat or very significant way, a Siena College poll released on Monday found.
The pandemic found the crisis has impacted the daily lives of 87 percent of New Yorkers, while 14 percent said they were under a form of mandatory quarantine.
New Yorkers are also taking steps themselves to avoid transmitting the virus.
Forty-two percent are self-quarantining and 39 percent are practicing a form of social distancing. Only 4 percent are going about life as usual.
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The poll has ground daily life and the economy in New York and the country to a virtual standstill. Thousands of people have lost their jobs, schools and non-essential businesses have closed and the death toll from the virus in New York alone has climbed to more than 4,000 people in the last month.
The virus has created an economic catastrophe and could have long-lasting psychological effects as well, exacerbating anxiety and depression.
Seventy-seven percent of New Yorkers polled are either somewhat or very concerned the virus will cause them serious financial problems. More than half, 51 percent of people polled, are concerned with being able to meet their monthly financial obligations.
Thirty-seven percent of those polled are concerned with being laid off as a result of the economic crisis spawned by the pandemic and efforts to control its spread.
And nearly 60 percent of people polled are concerned with their retirement savings and investments losing value, 41 percent of New Yorkers are concerned with ability to afford food.
“The coronavirus crisis has turned life upside down for nearly all New Yorkers. Ninety-five percent are either quaranting or cutting back on going out, not being around others and practicing social distancing,” said Don Levy, the director of the Siena College Research Institute. “Almost as many, 82 percent, are worried about their health.”
Sixty-eight percent of people reported their anxiety levels are up and 62 percent reported feeling like the crisis will never come to an end.
Still, 76 percent of New Yorkers said they were enjoying “small things” and spending time with those close to them.
“Despite being forced to change the way we live, being worried about our health and the health of everyone we care about, concerned about our financial well-being, and having to live with the uncertainty as to when this will ever end, an overwhelming number of New Yorkers say that they are getting a chance to appreciate – whether by watching old movies, playing games or just being together – having extra time with those that they are close to,” Levy said. “And, with all the things to worry about – health, money, food and bills – most of us say that we feel like we are enjoying the small things even more now than before.”
The poll of 402 New York residents was conducted from March 30 to April 2. It has a margin of error of 3.6 percentage points.