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We're facing the pandemic head-on

There's so much on the line these days, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread. Donald Trump puts our lives at risk with unproven theories and self-congratulation, falsely dividing our communities and walling us off from the rest of the world's progress.

But while the Trump administration plays games, state governments are stepping up to get the job done.

In the recent special session, our state legislature took steps to support Oregonians through these difficult times.

We passed protections for renters and homeowners by extending the moratorium on evictions and preventing foreclosures.

We added protections to make sure Oregonians' CARES Act payments are safe from garnishment, so families can keep food on the table.

We eased the way for cities to support those experiencing houselessness.

And yesterday, the Legislature's Emergency Board made over $200 million in investments to support struggling workers and small businesses hit hardest by the coronavirus.

The board committed to funding for:

  • Music, culture, and arts organizations that have been unable to open during the pandemic;

  • Support for workers who have contracted the virus but aren't eligible for traditional sick leave;

  • Emergency relief for workers still waiting for their state unemployment checks;

  • The Oregon Cares Fund for Black Relief and Resiliency to provide economic relief to Black individuals and businesses. Data show that Black Oregonians are shouldering a disproportionate amount of the economic and human consequences of the pandemic. It's critical we bring an equity lens to Oregon's recovery measures.

These are important steps, but there's still a lot to do.

Confirmed COVID-19 cases are on the rise across the state. Tens of thousands of Oregonians are struggling to make ends meet as they're laid off, scaled back, or sidelined by the virus.

As Senate Majority Leader, I'm leading the Oregon Senate Democrats in a historic effort to ensure our government is listening to and fighting for every person who calls this state home – especially those who have long been marginalized.

That means supporting Oregonians through this crisis as we take on critical challenges: affordable health care, workers' rights, protecting our environment and tackling climate change, rebuilding our economy, and working toward schools where every student has the support they need to succeed.

But to continue making progress, we need a walkout-proof majority in the Oregon Senate – and we're just two seats away! Now more than ever, we need elected officials who show up for the people's business, not run away when they hear something they don't like.

Chip in now to elect the hardworking, dedicated Senate Oregonians deserve!

We've got a difficult road to recovery ahead of us, but together, we'll get it done.


Posted on July 15, 2020.