Together with Nebraska Appleseed and Voices for Children, we are calling on Nebraska officials to immediately enact policies that will support families in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes prioritizing CARES Act funding to provide direct relief to Nebraskans now and to maximize other funding sources by building on existing programs.
“People are what makes our state’s economy run, and there is currently no economic recovery that does not center those most affected by the pandemic,” said Julia Isaacs Tse, policy coordinator at Voices for Children in Nebraska. “The choices that our leaders make now, or the choices they fail to make, will have consequences for Nebraska’s children for years to come.”
The group’s list of recommendations introduces provisions that could be implemented immediately by the Legislature when they convene to complete the 2020 legislative session on July 20. Priorities include:
- Ensuring access to food, housing, and other basic needs by investing in families.
- Strengthening access to child care for parents returning to work.
- Strengthening health and safety protections for all workers.
“Women, and particularly women of color, are the front lines of pandemic—as essential workers and as those disproportionately impacted by job loss. They also shoulder the majority of caregiving responsibilities for kids and aging parents, and are piecing together care for their kids in the face of school and daycare closures—all while keeping up with the responsibilities of their jobs and trying to make ends meet,” said Tiffany Seibert Joekel, Research and Policy Director at the Women’s Fund. “Policymakers have a tremendous opportunity to rise to the occasion and met this moment of need for women and their families across our state. It’s time to get to work for working Nebraskans.”
“A lot has changed in the world since the Unicameral last met in March. We’re experiencing the ongoing impacts of a global pandemic that has created economic instability for many in our state,” said James Goddard, Senior Director of Programs at Nebraska Appleseed. “Families are facing food insecurity, neighbors are facing eviction, workers are losing jobs, meatpacking employees and their families are choosing between a paycheck or their health, and parents are unsure how to afford needed child care. The Legislature should respond to these urgent needs during the remainder of their session.”
To view the full pandemic relief plan and list of recommendations, visit https://bit.ly/reliefNE.