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Congress passes coronavirus package, but much more is needed

On March 18, the president signed into law the bipartisan Families First Coronavirus Response Act that provides free testing and paid sick and emergency leave for some (steps must be taken to cover more); the bill also bolsters unemployment insurance, food initiatives, and federal support for Medicaid. But it’s just a start. Additional legislation is already in the works and we need to weigh in—right now. NEA’s top legislative priorities include: 

  • Putting money in people’s pockets by sending “stimulus” checks to households, cancelling federal student loan payments, and further expanding unemployment insurance
  • Injecting more money into state budgets and Medicaid to help avoid laying off educators and ensure access to health care
  • Closing the “homework gap” by providing devices and Wi-Fi hotspots for students who lack internet access at home
  • Providing flexibility in U.S. Department of Education regulations, especially those that govern Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) testing and interventions, and reasonable flexibility under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
  • Guaranteeing paid sick and family medical leave for everyone who needs it
  • Taking steps to prevent housing instability and a rise in homelessness

Email your representatives and urge them to support these legislative priorities to help students, educators, and families weather the coronavirus pandemic.

 

71 responses to “Congress passes coronavirus package, but much more is needed

    1. Don’t repeat the bank bailout of 2008 when over 800,000 homeowners were foreclosed. No corporate bailouts without worker bailouts. Homeownership was the American dream. All these years later, too many USA residents have lost this dream. The Great Recession is still affecting our citizens. Don’t compound this tragedy.

    2. Any funds made available by the federal government should be designated to support individual people and workers, not big businesses and corporations.

  1. It is unconscionable to have Democratic Senators and Congressmen NOT TO DO ANYTHING to help their constituents in these horrific times. My spouse is a self employed CPA who is not eligible for unemployment even though it is taken out of the paychecks he gives himself. Now that none of his clients will be paying him, he will not earn a penny and will get no help from the government. .As a recently retired teacher, I am on a budget and it will be difficult to pay all our bills. THE DEMOCRATS NEED TO STEP UP AND SIGN A BILL THAT WILL HELP THE AMERICAN PEOPLE. Otherwise, we should vote them out.

  2. Airlines and other corpoations already added trillions to the national debt with repubes tax cuts for the 1%!! Focus the COVID19 relief bill on health care to save lives, workers and students

  3. Big T said he “hoped” big corporations wouldn’t abuse the Families First Coronavirus Response Act but why not mandate that funds they might receive get disbursed to their employees.
    I don’t like that he constantly needs to assure Americans that he is doing an awesome job. Humility is needed, not grandstanding.
    Let his behavior speak For his “awesomeness” without him telling us what a great job he thinks he is doing.
    I keep hoping that maybe he will, using his own words, “some day wash away” from the presidency with a flood blue politicians.

  4. The best thing for this country is to demand that Donald Trump resign as President of the United States of America. Americans are dying everyday from corona virus because we as a nation was not prepared. There are not enough test kits and doctors and nurses are reusing and patching their masks. Donald Trump said that it was a Democratic hoax and that it would miraculously disappear. How can he stand in front of the television cameras and lie with promises of millions of masks and test kits? And there is that “miracle cure” coming “very soon”.

  5. All of congress needs to rise to the occasion and come together as a united group so all Americans can survive this horrific epidemic. This is not the time to vote via party lines but to vote to save the people of the United States. We don’t need to have any more deaths if we all stand united. We are suppose to be “We the people” not out just for one’s self. To all stay safe and healthy and let’s continue to help one another-please. God bless you all.

    1. We as educators need more support for our students that lack internet for distance learning. We also need assurances we will keep our jobs through this difficult time.

  6. On March 18, the president signed into law the bipartisan Families First Coronavirus Response Act that provides free testing and paid sick and emergency leave for some (steps must be taken to cover more); the bill also bolsters unemployment insurance, food initiatives, and federal support for Medicaid. But it’s just a start. Additional legislation is already in the works and we need to weigh in—right now. NEA’

    HERE’S A STRONG MESSAGE TO THOSE REPUBLICANS IN CONGRESS: STOP STEALING FROM THE CLASS OF CONSTITUENTS WHO NEED TO KEEP A LIVING COMING IN THRU COMPLETING THE LATEST STIMULUS BILL to help your constituents STAY ALIVE TO KEEP THEIR JOBS~ MIDDLE CLASS IS WHAT HOLDS THE NATION’S HAND, STOP ANY THOUGHTS OF CONTINUING TO GIVE BREAKS TO THE ALREADY-WEALTHY—> This IS A NEW EMERGENCY, ACT LIKE IT AND SOLVE IT CORRECTLY/FAIRLY SO WE AND OUR FAMILIES CAN CONTINUE TO WORK HEALTHY! NOW.

    1. We as educators need more support for our students that lack internet for distance learning. We also need assurances we will keep our jobs through this difficult time.

  7. The business motto has always been, no regulation required, business will always reset themselves on their own! This is, in all facts, a lie!!l The facts are that our corporations began their existences by asking the government for a hand out to start their business and every time AFTER when their greed and corruption pushed them to take unnecessary risks resulting these very corporations standing on the tip implosion, they have once again asked the government for another hand out which has now become a bailout, the government has done so!
    The moral of this factual presentation is that business cannot exist without regulation and that corporations EXPECT the taxpayers to clean up their mess!
    Now, it is a time when taxpayers are asking for a bailout to fight for their very existence and what has government done, very LITTLE!! Why is that? Why it is the fact that the wealthy who in fact control our government DON’T want to spend their money because you see they consider taxpayer money THEIR money !

  8. A safety net is needed for our students, families, and workers. Invest in the common good not corporate greed.

  9. I am writing to beg you to support the COVID-19 emergency legislation that seems to be voted upon this week.

    Closing the “homework gap” by providing devices and Wi-Fi hotspots for students who lack internet access at home in a necessity in all neighborhoods throughout the US.

    Providing flexibility in U.S. Department of Education regulations, especially those that govern Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) testing and interventions, and reasonable flexibility under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) This is our responsibility to provide free and appropriate education for all children.

    Thank you in advance for your continued support of Public School Education and Educators!!!

  10. This should be an American citizen bailout not a corporate one, we already gave to that one in the last recession.

  11. People first ! Hourly employees , tipped based workers , part-time workers, children , families . Take care of them! Don’t bail out large corporations. Provide all health care workers with any and all medical equipment they need to protect themselves and care for the ill.

    1. Congress is supposed to work for the people ! That means all of us ! There are too many making too little income and too many that do not have enough health insurance ! How about free college for all ? Europe has it in many countries ?

    2. We as educators need more support for our students that lack internet for distance learning. We also need assurances we will keep our jobs through this difficult time.

  12. Test all teachers for Corona Virus Antibodies.
    Those with anti-bodies are not “likely” to get infected.
    Teachers with anti-bodies can be sent to a school centrally located to several hospitals to teach and support children of hospital staff.

  13. I hope and pray everyone remembers Trump’s corruption, lies, thievery, arrogance, ignorance, and absolute failure to lead come November! VOTE the dangerous disease (worse than COVID-19) OUT, OUT, OUT! Send the Devil back to Hell. Strong words, but SOOOOO over it.

  14. Common Good Demands to protect students, familes, and workers.
    1. Health workers provided with child care support and proper staffing, personal protective equipment, and facilities.
    2. All COVID-19 related testing, treatment, and possible vaccines provided to everyone at no charge. Anyone seeking testing or treatment regardless of immigration status held harmless. No ICE raids or deportations.
    3. Full and equitable funding of pre K-14 public education, including special education, under the new conditions of teaching and learning
    4. Universal paid sick leave and family leave for the duration of the crisis and beyond.
    5. Universal basic income provided throughout the crisis, starting immediately with the most vulnerable workers.
    6. No evictions or foreclosures throughout the crisis. Moratorium on debt payments, including student loans and credit cards.

  15. This administration is strictly corrupt greedy lying cheating sleazy ignorant & racist…they need to stop trying to cut funding to programs like Healthcare, SNAP, Medicare & Social Security & put more funding into those programs, Stop trying to flood the Supreme Court with more people like them & put people in that will honor the Constitution, that will work for the people, that will work together to put an end to racism & poverty for Everyone!!!!!!!!!

  16. Support students’ access to resources during the virus shutdown. Support families and put people first during this time of need. End loan forgiveness! Allow all families to gain access to the net at home. Pay educational contractors, hourly workers and paraeducators.

    1. Please support families through this crisis. As a paraeducater have worked 24 years at Mountain View School with special needs children. I was still working. Please help us all. Thank you

    2. Agree with B Lewis. No payments or interest on college loans. Major iondustries can access low interest loans with their assets as collateral. Workers and familioes first.

    3. Make sure every family has access to the internet for educating their children. Low income kids have to be able to keep up during this health crisis. Call on Computer companies to donate laptops to every child who needs one.

    4. We need to get rid of educational contractors all together. They’re the worst thing that’s every have to Education. If you don’t already know this it’s because you’re totally out of touch with schools.

      We should always Support students’ access to resources during any time of the year. I think just put a freeze of loan forgiveness, and just allow them to pay on the back end would be helpful during this time. No one else got loans forgiven, so a simple hold on loans would be more than sufficient. Most families have cell phones , so They almost all can gain access to the net at home.

    5. I work for KinderCare in Stoneham. I am not getting paid. They told me I have to apply for unemployment. I don’t understand why when all other daycares are getting paid. I also work a part time after school program for the Melrose public school system. I am getting paid half if my 18 hour a week pay as long as I do busy work on the computer. They won’t answer my question if I can apply for unemployment. I need answeres and no one will provide them. It’s very frustrating. If anyone can give me some guidance that would be so helpful. Thank you.
      April Serio

    6. Support students’ access to resources during the virus shutdown. Support families and put people first during this time of need. End loan forgiveness! Allow all families to gain access to the net at home. Pay educational contractors, hourly workers and paraeducators.

  17. That does not help, let’s all be like Desmond Tutu suggested when Apartheid was supposedly over in South Africa and have reconcilliation and move ahead to working for a more perfect union. Help your community.

  18. Yes, a chance or students to get an equal education. Schools on line with group showing, group classes, and sped or para educators on hand after to reinforce the lesson. As I have been a inner-city special ed teacher this is an opportunity for schools to help all students. Parents can be on with them as watchers and listeners and it would help them help their kids. After I retired I worked part-time with 9th grade math and I had previously taught K-8, so I had to review You Tube for math reviews before I could go into the classroom. No shame in not knowing or remembering. I used to be honest with my students and tell them that I had to review, no worries.

    1. Please attacking either side does not get anything accomplished. Be smart. Showing hate and anger invalidate our cause. It’s time we stoo acting like rabid animals and show the people that we want to persuade that our concerns are detived from reason and no partisan animosity.

    2. True and he will kill us all if we can’t get him out! General Mattis just left when he could have led a military coup to take him out before he kills us all! Now we can’t even take to the streets in protest without endangering our own lives. And, as has been the case for 3 years, the 25th Amendment is clearly applicable but he appointed syncophants instead of patriots to his Cabinet!

      1. Instead of taking steps to protect our heath, Republicans used the January pandemic memo to sell their own stock and the rest of us be damned!

  19. Our state or federal government need to find ways to provide homes for homeless. One idea could be to allow people to live in foreclosed houses or condos owned by Banks.

  20. Politics of Lies –

    With EW dropping out, one more candidate who took campaign contributions from voters only was out of the race.

    The rational behind the Declaration of Independence was to end rule by the King and his Corporations. The subsequent Constitution of 1787 attempted setting up government whose policies were those of, by and for voters only. The sovereigns, or policy makers, of that constitution were to be chosen from amongst voters by the voters.

    The emoluments clause was to ensure no gifting of public officials from non-sovereigns/voters.

    A Campaign Contribution is a ‘qualified gift’ to the person running for public office ~ to be used for campaign efforts. None the less, it is a gift to the individual.

    Campaign contribution laws changed 30+ years ago to allow campaign contributions from non-voters. For the past 30+ years more than 50% of campaign monies has come from non-voters ~ obligating our ‘representatives’ to be beholding to their donors, not their voters. This constitutes a lie to the voters that they have representation. This has set up a government beholding to corporate interests often in opposition to voters expressed wishes.

    We now have a sitting President with 16,000 recorded Tweets documented as lies
    – he has obstructed justice by not allowing witnesses to comply with congressional subpoenas
    – 53 Republican Senators admitted to their personal obstruction of justice by not allowing witnesses to a trial called for by the House.
    – his lies have spread Covid-19 through the country and are impairing efforts to rationally manage his created catastrophe.

    As hoped for in the Declaration of Independence of 1776, we again need to aspire to of a government of, by and for voters only – end the lies from corporate (and Russian Mafia backed) politicians.

    It is not an issue of free speech, rather one of preventing ‘legal bribing’ of government officials by non-voters.

    This could be solved with a five word law to clarify the emoluments clause:

    “Campaign Contributions from Voters Only “

    It could easily be funded by tax dollars allocated to each voter to distribute to the candidates who would best represent them.

    Lawrence Lessig has written books and has a great TED Talk on the issue.

    As in 1776, it is time to strive for representative government and its maintenance.

  21. We need to join the rest of the developed nations of the world and recognize healthcare as a right rather than a privilege which must be “earned”. HR1384 or S1129 would be a good place to start.

  22. It is critical to shift the funding from the corporations to the people who are in desperate need of basic human rights to survive.

  23. Please help the working class people remain strong during this time of crisis. We are the ones without work or picking up the slack for those who can’t during this time, while the welfare sit at home and continue to suck from the system. I believe that the original intent of social benefits was to help those working during difficult times, well now is the time. I also believe our seniors must not be forgotten during all of this. They may not be out there in the daily grind, but they’ve put in their time and should be able to receive what they need now. Please help those who’ve broke their backs building this country and making it what it is today. We must also look at the decrease in pollution and listen to mother earth. She is obviously giving us a clear warning to what this planet needs. We need to be kind to others and the earth, slow down and get back to our roots. Life has become so fast paced and this may be a wake up call to slow down, spend time with family and be more self sufficient again. I beg you to look out for the people!

  24. I always insert

    “As an informed and voting constituent”

    at the beginning of every correspondence to my legislators.

  25. You need to do more for people during this war with Coronavirus. People cannot afford housing and food during this crisis!!!!
    Dianne Politzer

  26. Please remember all people are affected by this pandemic and significant help is needed for our most vulnerable!

  27. The recently passed Families First Coronavirus Response Act was a start, but much more needs to be addressed. Please proceed with empathy and do more!!

  28. Responding to crisis, especially to those in need, reflects our character as a nation. Let’s do all we can to rebuild a stronger and sustaining system of preparedness and response. How we respond to fear IS a valid question.

  29. CALL ON THE FEDERAL GOV TO BRING TECHNOLOGY & TEACHERS TO THE COMMUNITY CENTERS. HAVE THE GOV TO PAY THE TEACHERS….NOT THE STATES.

    KIDS IN THE PROJECTS NEED SPECIAL ATTENTION. THERE SHOULD BE EXTRA TEMPORARY
    PORTABLE CLASSROOMS SET UP IN THE PROJECTS TO EDUCATE OUR KIDS.

    1. Thank you for your concern!!! I’m greatly worried about the “digital divide”. How are we to help children, teens and adults who don’t have ready access to online systems??? These people may fall behind in their studies, continuing education or jobs which require them to work remotely!!! Our go to – public libraries are now closed!

    2. In what way do we need to explain to you that we are indeed worthy of help, and not just you rich folks? PLEASE help us

    3. Please help to support our Educators, Students, and Families during the Coronavirus Pandemic. The Families 1st Coronavirus Response Act that recently passed will be very helpful, but that is just a start. We are going to need continued support in many areas to provide daily help to all affected by this World-wide Pandemic. Thank you in advance for your help and support!

    4. We also need to include help for those essential workers who will have children at home and no way to afford day care.

    5. Please support families through this crisis. As a paraeducater have worked 24 years at Mountain View School with special needs children. I was still working. Please help us all. Thank you

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