The April jobs report painted a dire picture that many New México families already knew from personal experience: at least 14.7% of adults are out of work, with a likely 5% under-count according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. I recently asked New Mexicans in our community about their current employment situation with results echoing these grim numbers
Congress passed the CARES Act to provide individuals with a one-time payment of $1,200 and create Pandemic Unemployment Assistance to provide another $600 a week to those losing their jobs during this crisis and expand unemployment benefits to self-employed individuals and gig workers. I am happy to report that the New México Department of Workforce Solutions updated its website to process all of the new applications and benefits available to New México workers.
Our work is not done, and I am working with all of my colleagues to expand on the CARES Act and put families, workers, and small businesses first.
On the same day that the April jobs report was released, White House Economic Advisor Larry Kudlow announced that the White House is not interested in further stimulus packages this month. I have been listening to you and heard your calls for more help from Congress to help stay safe in your workplace or stay financially secure as you stay home to keep our community healthy. I remain in contact with my colleagues in the House of Representatives and am pushing for a vote on the next stimulus package as soon as possible that includes:
-An Essential Workers Bill of Rights to guarantee personal protective equipment to all essential workers, from healthcare professionals to grocery store clerks, hazard pay for their work, and holding businesses accountable if they fail to protect workers and their workers get sick.
-Monthly direct cash assistance to all families that automatically continues through the entirety of this crisis. I have heard from mixed immigration status couples who file their taxes together and from caregivers who file their older family members as dependents were unjustly missed by the last rebate check.
-Further aid to state, local, and tribal governments that expect massive budget shortfalls due to the coronavirus pandemic to make sure that they do not have to cut vital programs such as infrastructure, education, and healthcare. Additionally, I led my colleagues in calling for increased funding to states for their Medicaid programs to help keep the most vulnerable among us covered
My office stands ready to help with anything you need. My constituent services team is taking phone calls and responding to emails as soon as possible. I am in constant contact with federal, state and local officials and be sure to update you as we move forward.
Experts have been working hard to understand this new strain of coronavirus. Because new information is coming out every day, please visit the sites below to stay up to date:
-The Centers for Disease Control provides updates on the virus and safety information for the public and healthcare professionals.
-The New Mexico Department of Health provides updates on the disease’s spread within the state, as well as frequently asked questions available here.
-My bilingual Coronavirus Info Center is a one-stop-shop for phone numbers, helpful links, and information.
–Governor Lujan Grisham’s website where you can find ways to help our community if you are able to take on more.
Our work is not done, and I am working with all of my colleagues to expand on the CARES Act and put families, workers, and small businesses first. The health and safety of you and your loved ones is important. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to call my office at (505) 346-6781.
Congresswoman Deb Haaland represents the 1st District of New Mexico.
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