The American Rescue Plan is a lifeline for Ohioans
Posted March 12, 2021 in Press Releases
Today, President Joseph Biden signed a historic $1.9 trillion aid package. The American Rescue Plan provides resources we all need to rebuild from the pandemic recession and targets relief to those who have been hit hardest. Policy Matters Ohio Executive Director Hannah Halbert released the following statement:
“Over the past year, Ohioans of all races, from big cities and small towns, have pulled together. We’ve looked out for sick neighbors, delivered food to those in need and wore masks to keep each other safe. Today, our elected leaders in Washington pulled through for us, as well.
The American Rescue Plan is a lifeline. It will expand support for testing, treatment and vaccination. It will help more people with the cost of health insurance. In January, 586,000 Ohioans were behind on their rent and in danger of losing their home. The American Rescue Plan provides increased housing assistance and boosts food aid to help families put dinner on the table. It extends the pandemic unemployment assistance through September 6 and provides a new and needed round of stimulus checks, as well as funds to immediately help people meet urgent expenses like rent, utility bills, gas.
The bill increases the federal child tax credit, which will benefit 2.4 million or 92% of Ohio children. It includes increased funding for child care, so as the economy reopens child care providers will be there to care for kids and help parents to return to work. It includes much-needed state and local government aid, which will restore jobs for teachers, firefighters, and other critical public employees — and prevent further layoffs. The package provides new funds for schools, colleges and universities to cover the costs of distance learning, safe in-person instruction, caring for the physical and mental health of returning students.
The American Rescue Plan provides much needed, but temporary and time limited relief. The economic recovery isn’t going to happen overnight, particularly for people of color, who were too often excluded from the gains of a rebounding job market because of labor market discrimination.
Ohio’s state legislators should use these federal funds to help those most in need and to reduce the longstanding inequities exacerbated by the COVID-19 public health and economic crisis. We can start now to build a better Ohio for all of us, no exceptions.”