Lawmakers outline many vital investments
WASHINGTON — This week, lawmakers in the U.S. House of Representatives released new, much-needed legislation to respond to the COVID-19 public health crisis in the U.S. Among other critical provisions, the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act invests in the health of our communities by increasing funding to state Medicaid programs, ensuring free COVID-19 testing and related treatment for all, expanding affordable health care coverage and other health care options to people of all immigration statuses; supporting needed voting reforms to ensure safe and secure elections; and putting personal protective equipment in the hands of frontline workers.
This bill fulfills many important domestic needs, but there is still more that must be done to support the people and communities most affected in the U.S. and around the world.
Statement from Alexis McGill Johnson, acting president, Planned Parenthood Action Fund:
“As the pandemic continues, the needs of communities across the country and the world grow every day. We also can’t lose sight of the fact that women, and disproportionately women of color, make up the majority of essential workers keeping those communities afloat — including health care workers fighting COVID-19.
“The HEROES Act would provide desperately needed resources to protect those on the frontlines so they can continue their work, support families struggling from income loss, and secure the integrity of our elections so that we can move forward, together.
“We thank Speaker Pelosi for leading this critical legislation through the House — there is no time to waste, as some in the Senate are suggesting. The Senate must build on this strong foundation for a domestic response from the House and Congress should pass comprehensive legislation that supports women, people of color, LGBTQ people, people with low incomes, immigrants, people who live at the intersections of these identities, and families in the U.S. and around the world.
“Beyond this bill, there’s more to be done to address the physical, emotional, and economic damage caused by this disease and the administration's failed response to its spread. We’ll keep working to help families, support safety-net providers as they protect their communities, and restore global partnerships. And as always, we’ll never stop fighting for policies and leaders who understand the systemic inequities that have made this pandemic so much worse for low-income people and communities of color, and who will ensure that our government is equipped, willing, and able to address the next public health crisis.”
Planned Parenthood Action Fund is an independent, nonpartisan, not-for-profit membership organization formed as the advocacy and political arm of Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The Action Fund engages in educational, advocacy and electoral activity, including grassroots organizing, legislative advocacy, and voter education.