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Tell Your Members of Congress We Need a Coronavirus People's Bailout

Just the Asks

The coronavirus outbreak affects all of us, regardless of our race, wealth, or citizenship status. Trump and Republicans’ proposed response, in each of the three response bills to pass Congress so far, has been to sell out working and poor people's health to serve his corporate donors and advance his political campaign. Meanwhile, we’ve seen people across the country band together to help each other through these hard times, and acting in solidarity with one another. We deserve a response from Congress that puts people's needs above corporate profits by protecting our democracy, our health, and peoples’ financial security, and that’s what we’re going to keep demanding: a People’s Bailout, for everyone.

While the bills Congress has passed have temporarily filled in important gaps in our paid sick leave, unemployment insurance, and health care systems, they are grossly insufficient given the magnitude of the current crisis and contain hurtful and counterproductive exclusions. What’s worse, in return for helping people who are desperately in need of support, Trump and his Republican allies demanded hundreds of billions of dollars in unaccountable corporate bailouts. 

This crisis isn’t over and soon Congress will likely have to pass at least one additional response package. We need to continue demanding that any coronavirus response legislation puts people’s needs ahead of corporate profits — in other words, we need a People’s Bailout.

Congress must fix the gaps in the previous bills, and make sure that the response to both the outbreak and the accompanying recession make both less likely to happen in the future. Specifically, we’re asking that Congress:

  1. Protect our democratic processes while protecting each other.

  2. Make health the top priority, for all people, with no exceptions.

  3. Provide economic relief directly to the people.

  4. Rescue workers and communities, not corporate executives.

  5. Make a down payment on a regenerative economy, while preventing future crises.

Call your representative and two senators, and tell them to support a People’s Bailout that puts people’s needs ahead of corporate profits.

 

What needs to go in the next coronavirus response bill?

While the first three coronavirus response bills filled in important gaps in our paid sick leave, unemployment insurance, and health care systems, they left a lot to be desired. In return for helping people who are desperately in need of support, Trump and his Republican allies demanded hundreds of billions of dollars in unaccountable corporate bailouts. We need to continue demanding that any coronavirus response legislation puts people’s needs ahead of corporate profits.

That’s why we’re working with partners as part of the People’s Bailout coalition: to ensure that any relief packages must protect our democracy, expand health protections for all, and get millions of people back to work in good jobs. In response to this pandemic, which requires swift and unprecedented action from the federal government, any legislation passed by Congress must:

  1. Protect our democratic processes while protecting each other.

  2. Make health the top priority, for all people, with no exceptions.

  3. Provide economic relief directly to the people.

  4. Rescue workers and communities, not corporate executives.

  5. Make a down payment on a regenerative economy, while preventing future crises.

A People’s Bailout means legislation that will:

Protect our democratic processes while protecting each other

  • States must expand vote by mail, extend voting deadlines, increase early voting days, and communicate extensively with voters about date changes, polling closures, or other critical election information

  • States must expand online and/or automatic voter registration

  • The federal government can assist by funding election infrastructure, requiring no-excuse absentee voting in federal elections, and provide additional drop-boxes for ballots in federal buildings and post offices

  • All in-person voting locations must be provided with sanitization equipment and guidelines for keeping voters at a safe distance from each other and poll workers 

  • Congress must approve at least $4 billion in funding to implement these changes

  • Take action now to ensure that the November election can happen safely as planned and without disenfranchising any voter, even under pandemic conditions.

  • For recommendations related to our elections, see here.

Make health the top priority, for all people, with no exceptions

  • Increase federal funding for Medicaid and other health programs that cover low-wage people and communities of color, and that testing and treatment are available regardless of immigration status.

  • Ensure pharmaceutical and medical device corporations can’t price gouge people for testing, treatment, and preventative measures

  • Enact an emergency OSHA Standard to protect frontline workers

  • Immediately begin a special enrollment period to let people enroll in health care coverage

  • End surprise billing for medical services

Provide economic relief directly to the people 

  • Provide monthly, direct cash payments to all individuals and families regardless of immigration status

  • Place a moratorium on evictions, foreclosures, repossessions, and utility shutoffs; prohibit debt collection and prevent negative credit reporting

  • Place a moratorium on student loan payments and provide forgiveness for student loan holders

  • Universal paid sick leave at 100% of wages, no matter the size of the business

  • Unemployment Insurance for all, including immigrants

  • Expand SNAP (nutrition assistance) 

  • Increase Social Security payments to seniors

Rescue workers and communities, not corporate executives

  • Require corporations who take bailout money to maintain 100% of payroll

  • No taxpayer funds should be used for executive bonuses, stock buy-backs, “golden parachute” payments, or dividends

  • Any company receiving a bailout should be required to increase their minimum wage to $15/hour within a year of the end of this emergency

  • Impose transparency requirements on political spending of companies that take bailout money

  • Set strict lobbying limits on companies that take bailout money to ensure we aren’t funding post-pandemic corporate lobbying efforts

  • Provide a seat for workers on corporate boards

  • Keep all collective bargaining agreements in place

Make a down payment on a regenerative economy, while preventing future crises

  • Enact a federal jobs program that focuses on creating green jobs and invests in a green economy

  • Prevent bailouts for the fossil fuel industry and other industries that put the future of our planet at risk

  • Focus resources in frontline communities that are the hardest hit by the twin crises of coronavirus and an exploitative economy