PRESS RELEASE: AFSCME Council 13 continues to urge Congress, White House to come to an agreement on comprehensive COVID-19 relief package

Harrisburg, PA (October 13, 2020) – AFSCME Council 13 continues to urge the White House to work with Congress to quickly deliver crucial funding to states, cities, towns and schools that are reeling from the ongoing pandemic.

We can neither beat the pandemic nor safely reopen the economy if we cut public services and give the brave public service workers who provide them pink slips.

“The fiscal health of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and its cities, municipalities and school districts, as well as the safety and job security of the front-line workers who deliver vital public services, depends on the passage of adequate stimulus funding,” Council 13 Executive Director David Fillman said.

The coronavirus is devastating communities governed by officials from both parties, and federal aid would save jobs and public services everywhere. The bipartisan National Governors Association said recently, “we know now that there can be no national recovery if state and local governments aren’t solvent…This is a national problem, and it demands a bipartisan and national solution.”

These are not partisan issues. Democrats, Republicans and Independents alike want timely trash pickup, safe schools, fast 911 response times and other strong public services. There is consensus from economists across the ideological spectrum – including the Chair of the Federal Reserve who spoke up emphatically this week – that this aid is essential to a healthy recovery.

President Trump blew up negotiations on a COVID-19 stimulus bill desperately needed by struggling families and communities nationwide. He did so even though this pandemic continues to ravage the nation, with more than 210,000 people dead and the economy in a catastrophic downward spiral. And he did so despite the House’s passage of multiple bills and their willingness to compromise. 

Council 13 encourages its members, public service workers and all Americans, to keep the pressure on those in power and hold them accountable by voting in this year’s election.  

AFSCME (American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees) is the largest affiliate in the AFL-CIO.  AFSCME Council 13 represents more than 65,000 employees in the commonwealth of Pennsylvania.