To respond to the growing impact of Covid-19, the city and county of Durham launched a Recovery and Renewal Task Force in May 2020. The task force has prioritized its work using a three-phased approach to the pandemic and its longer-term consequences, addressing public health, economic, and mental and behavioral health crises. While these phases are interconnected and unfolding simultaneously, the task force has focused most of its efforts during the past six months on the immediate public health crisis and strategies to mitigate the spread of the virus. Over the next several months, the task force plans to dedicate more attention and resources to strategies and initiatives that can advance an equitable economic recovery for businesses and workers. However, the task force is currently set to end in May 2021. 

To prevent a gap in this critical work, the city of Durham will partner with FUSE Executive Fellow Leila Pedersen for one-year to develop a plan for moving recommendations forward beyond the term of the task force. The Executive Fellow will implement new initiatives centered on talent development and back-to-work programs, small business resiliency, small business promotion, and support for workers in low-wage industries.