WISCONSIN – Today, Rep. Mark Pocan, Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley, and front line nurses joined Protect Our Care Wisconsin for a virtual press conference to discuss how President Biden’s American Rescue Plan will provide desperately needed relief to Wisconsinites struggling during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As the COVID-19 pandemic stretches into 2021, Wisconsinites remain desperate for federal relief, and are urging swift action in Congress. The American Rescue Plan will deliver much-needed relief to families, provide support for struggling state and local governments, jumpstart a nationwide vaccination program, and support rebuilding of communities across Wisconsin.
During the event, Congressman Rep. Mark Pocan praised the Biden administration’s early moves to confront the pandemic and its’ impacts before noting that Congress has the responsibility to act in order to free up the resources necessary to support taxpayers, business owners, and local units of government. “We (Congress) didn’t take that responsibility seriously enough in the past thanks to Mitch McConnell,” said Pocan. “Now, we’ve got to.”
Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley laid out the magnitude of the challenge to local governments nearly a full year since the onset of the pandemic, pointing out the myriad ways that municipalities have been called on to respond to the crisis while maintaining essential services. That strain on communities of all sizes is why he is so supportive of the leadership President Biden and Vice President Harris are showing. “It cannot be stressed enough, honestly, how great the need is for resources to not only support Milwaukee County employees but also to provide the critical county services that so many residents rely on,” said Crowley.
Two southeast Wisconsin nurses participated to share their unique perspective on the challenge. Rebecca Vest noted the multiple levels of despair felt by so many at this time – the threat of being diagnosed, the threat of losing your livelihood through no fault of your own, the uncertainty over long term implications, “We all feel this heavy weight of the pandemic weighing us down,” she remarked. Leah Blough noted the impact passage of the American Rescue Plan would have, stating, “It’s important for healthcare workers to see there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, to see that there’s actually help coming their way.”