Progressives Mobilize to Pass Heroes Act, House COVID Relief Bill

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PRESS CONTACT:
Valerie Jean-Charles
covidresponse@fenton.com

Progressives Mobilize to Pass Heroes Act, House COVID Relief Bill

Groups Vow to Continue Fighting for Improvements and Additional Relief

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Leaders of the country’s biggest progressive organizations pledged today to mobilize their millions of members to pass the HEROES Act relief package just proposed by Speaker Pelosi and House Democrats. They praised the bill for meeting many of the most urgent needs families and communities face, especially given Republicans’ attempts to block relief in order to bail out big businesses and reward their wealthy donors.

At the same time, progressive leaders said they will continue to advocate for additional relief that fully meets the economic and health needs of all people regardless of immigration status, keeps workers on payrolls, provides recurring cash relief payments, ensures childcare needs are met, delivers enough state and local aid to avoid cuts to essential services, provides dedicated aid to public schools, closes loopholes that allow for corrupt exploitation by corporations, and provides relief from rent and mortgage payments.

In response to the Speaker’s proposal, the following statement was released by:

  • American Federation of Teachers
  • Bend the Arc Jewish Action
  • Care in Action
  • Community Change Action
  • CPD Action
  • Demos Action
  • Greenpeace USA
  • Indivisible
  • MoveOn
  • SEIU
  • United We Dream Action
  • Working Families Party

The statement follows:

“This is a historic, once-in-a-generation crisis. It requires a historic response. This proposal is an important step.

“We urgently need the relief measures that Speaker Pelosi introduced today. More than 80,000 people have died, more than 1.3 million have been infected, more than 33 million have filed for unemployment, and millions more are struggling to pay bills, hold on to housing and put food on the table. And predictably, generations of racist, anti-immigrant and anti-worker policies that created inequality in work, health, wealth and education are now allowing the coronavirus to attack Black, Latinx, AAPI, undocumented and Native American people at far greater rates, and are deeply disrupting life for communities of color.

“We have suffered for months as President Trump has downplayed the coronavirus threat, pointed fingers, shirked responsibility and made reckless decisions intended to improve his reelection chances. Republicans have done nothing but push ‘relief’ that bails out corporations but gives too little, too late to essential workers, small businesses and everyday people.

“In the face of this vacuum of leadership and complete failure to govern, Speaker Pelosi and House Democrats have proposed legislation that is responsive to the needs of the people, regardless of immigration status. No matter their party affiliation, people support responses to the pandemic that put people first and actually meet the scale of the crisis and protect workers, families and the economy.

“Our millions of members know we cannot safely roll back distancing measures without protecting people first, and that premature rollbacks will cause chaos and fear that harm the economy. Measures like those in this legislation are vital to getting through this pandemic because they ensure working people have the support they need to feed their families while following public health guidelines. We are ready to mobilize to make sure that Republicans in both houses of Congress, especially the Senate, know their constituents expect them to stop playing politics and act now. We expect them to pass Speaker Pelosi’s proposal, which includes provisions critical to provide real relief and avoid further economic catastrophe.”

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