Safeguarding our state and local governments
With 30 percent of our economy shuttered and one in ten workers filing for unemployment, the COVID-19 pandemic is not only threatening the health of our communities, but our financial security.
As a result, it’s putting enormous strain on our state and local governments, who are at the forefront of ensuring that every Mainer is safe and healthy during this time.
That’s why Mainers for Working Families signed on to a letter urging the federal government to pass $500 billion in unrestricted aid to states, territories, and local governments. We’re proud to join 180 organizations, including other Maine organizations and representatives, in calling on Congress to act immediately.
The letter also urges Congress to:
Adopt the payroll guarantee to “deep freeze” local economies and protect workers and businesses during an economic shutdown.
Make additional investments in unemployment insurance (UI) by including triggers that allow both the $600 per week in Pandemic Unemployment Compensation and expanded eligibility to phase out only when economic conditions warrant.
Expanded eligibility for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance to immigrant workers left out of UI and new labor market entrants.
Disburse another direct cash payment and make it available to all households regardless of tax filing or immigration status.
Provide full funding for testing, treatment, and front-line workers’ personal protective equipment.
Include strong worker protections.
While the first three federal bills included many vital resources, more aid is needed to safeguard our state and local governments during this crisis. We urge Congress to provide this aid, and lay the groundwork for strong social safety nets for working families, now and beyond this pandemic.