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The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act allocated $350 billion to help small businesses and nonprofits keep workers employed amid the pandemic and economic downturn. Known as the Paycheck Protection Program, the initiative provides 100% federally guaranteed loans to eligible organizations.

Importantly, these loans may be forgiven if borrowers maintain their payrolls during the crisis or restore their payrolls afterward.

The administration soon will release more details including the list of lenders offering loans under the program. In the meantime, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has issued this guide to help organizations understand what to expect and prepare to file for a loan.

For the complete guide and checklist, click here.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

April 3, 2020

MEDIA CONTACT:
Will Dempster, (202) 224-9813

Hirono, Harris, Chu, Grijalva, Correa Introduce Legislation to Provide Critical Assistance to Vulnerable Communities Impacted by COVID-19 Pandemic

Coronavirus Immigrant Families Protection Act Would Make Sure Everyone in Our Country Can Access Critical Resources During the Coronavirus Crisis

Legislation Would Suspend Policies that Discourage Immigrant Families from Using Essential Services, Ensure Everyone Has Access to COVID-19 Testing and Treatment, Expand Language Access Programs, and Codify Access to Coronavirus Relief Measures for Vulnerable Communities

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senators Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) and Representatives Judy Chu (D-Calif.), Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.), and Lou Correa (D-Calif.) unveiled new legislation to ensure that everyone in our country – especially vulnerable communities – can access health care and other critical resources during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Coronavirus Immigrant Families Protection Act would, among other provisions, help ensure that all communities are able to access COVID-19 testing and treatment, and other relief services provided in coronavirus relief legislation. It would provide dedicated funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to conduct public outreach in multiple languages to hard-to-reach populations to ensure that vulnerable communities have access to COVID-19 relief measures and critical public health information.

The bill would also temporarily modify immigration policies that deter immigrants from receiving the medical care they need throughout the coronavirus pandemic, such as the public charge rule. This rule has had a widespread chilling effect in discouraging even those not subject to the rule from seeking health care and other critical services due to confusion and fear about the rule’s impact.

“The coronavirus does not discriminate based on immigration status, socio-economic status, or English-language proficiency, and neither should programs established to provide relief for people suffering during the pandemic,” Senator Hirono said. “In the face of an unprecedented public health and economic crisis, we must all come together to ensure that everyone in our communities, particularly the most vulnerable among us, have the support they need. That is how we are going to get through this pandemic. Together.”

“This virus impacts everyone – it does not care about your race, your ethnicity, your gender, your age, or your immigration status,”Senator Harris said. “The Coronavirus Immigrant Families Protection Act would allow immigrants to have meaningful access to the vital resources they need during this crisis regardless of immigration status. No one should fear going to the grocery store or receiving care from the hospital.”

“As coronavirus has upended all our lives, we in Congress have rushed to provide the necessary relief to help our whole economy survive this crisis. But you cannot do that by excluding entire segments of the population. This virus does not care about immigration status. It does not discriminate and neither should we. Immigrants own businesses and homes, support families, and pay rent, and contribute to their communities. And most importantly, immigrants have the same healthcare needs we all do, but face restrictions or adverse actions if they access healthcare,” Representative Chu said. “That is simply wrong, especially during a pandemic. All immigrants should have access to healthcare, receive the same benefit we are sending to everyone else, and have the ability to work so they can stay healthy, afford food, and pay rent. That is why we have introduced this bill today to correct the gaps in previous legislation, and ensure everybody has an equal opportunity to survive this crisis.”

“Immigrant workers are working in many of the essential jobs keeping our communities and the economy running during this uncertain time,” Representative Grijalva said. “COVID-19 does not care about your immigration status,  so neither should our response. This legislation prohibits discrimination when accessing COVID-19 relief programs and focuses on getting important economic assistance to all families—regardless of their immigration status—while expanding the nation’s ability to control the virus and recover economically.”

“I was appalled to learn hardworking, taxpaying immigrants were left out of the $2 trillion CARES Act. These taxpayers work in critical sectors of our economy, like agriculture, and contribute greatly to our country. While many of us sit at home, these hardworking immigrants are still at work in our hospitals, our fields, and countless other industries,” Representative Lou Correa said. “The coronavirus doesn’t care about a person’s wealth, job, or immigration status. By casing out immigrants, we are placing some of our most vulnerable residents in grave danger. Every individual taxpayer, irrespective of citizenship status, needs government assistance now.”

Senators Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Ed Markey (D-Mass.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), and Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) co-sponsored the legislation.

A broad coalition of organizations support the Coronavirus Immigrant Families Protection Act, including the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), National Immigration Law Center (NILC), National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC), Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF), Tahirih Justice Center, United We Dream (UWD), Center for American Progress, Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA), Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC, Casa de Esperanza, Esperanza Immigrant Rights Project, CCLA Inc., California Immigrant Policy Center, National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA), Japanese American Citizens League, Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance, AFL-CIO, National Latina Institute for Reproductive Justice, National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF), Immigrant Legal Resource Center, Southeast Asia Resource Action Center, OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates, and Central American Resource Center (CARECEN-LA).

“We are proud to endorse the Coronavirus Immigrant Families Protection Act,” Olivia Golden, Executive Director of the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), said. “Given the devastating impact of this public health and economic crisis, this bill will ensure that no family is deterred from seeking emergency assistance for themselves or their loved ones because of fear of immigration enforcement or be prohibited from receiving life-saving treatment or access to COVID-19 testing because of concerns related to their immigration status. We applaud Senator Hirono for recognizing that our ability to overcome the devastating impact of this public health and economic crisis will depend on the ability of everyone to access the help they need, including the millions of immigrant workers who are on the frontlines of fighting this public health emergency.”

“Immigrants are on the front lines confronting this public health crisis as workers in the health care sector, harvesting and preparing our food, delivering our groceries, and caring for our loved ones. If we truly want to win this fight against a pandemic that doesn’t discriminate based on a person’s wealth, race or place of birth, we need Congress to pass policies that ensure immigrants are part of the solution and also receive the health care and economic support everyone needs to get through this crisis,” Marielena Hincapié, Executive Director of the National Immigration Law Center (NILC), said. “Senator Hirono’s bill addresses crucial gaps left in the last relief package and ensures that we all have access to testing, health care, and vital economic lifelines. I commend Senator Hirono and other Members of Congress who are advancing a more inclusive and equitable vision for America that acknowledges the role of immigrants as protagonists in our recovery from this global catastrophe.”

“During this unprecedented national emergency, we cannot and must not leave out our most vulnerable families, neighbors and communities. We deeply appreciate the leadership of Senators Hirono and Harris and Representatives Chu, Grijalva and Correa for introducing this legislation, which would ensure that immigrants and limited English proficient individuals have access to the same health care and economic aid as everyone else.” Juliet K. Choi, Executive Vice President of the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum, said.

“The Coronavirus Immigrant Families Protection Act recognizes that we are together in this fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and leaving any community behind jeopardizes the success that we are all working toward. Guaranteeing no-cost testing and treatment for every person in this country who needs it, regardless of immigration status, is an investment in our wellbeing. Similarly, it is essential that no person be afraid to seek medical attention because it could result in their separation from their loved ones and their expulsion from the country,” Neera Tanden, President and CEO of the Center for American Progress said. “We also celebrate that under the bill, nobody in this country who is suffering as a result of the coronavirus pandemic and files a tax return using an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number will be precluded from receiving the critical assistance that Congress made available in the third COVID package, because it is those badly-needed stimulus dollars that will help families make ends meet.”

“We commend the introduction of this important bill to protect the health, safety and security of millions of immigrant workers and their families who do so many front-line jobs from health care workers and janitorial staff to harvesting, delivering, and stocking our food,” John C. Yang, president and executive director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC, said. “We can’t stop the harms from this virus without protecting everyone.”

Congress has acted swiftly to provide significant additional resources for coronavirus-related testing, medical care, and other services. But reports indicate that fear and confusion is deterring immigrants from seeking the medical care for the coronavirus in light of continuing immigration enforcement actions and the public charge rule. This chilling effect continues despite USCIS’s announcement that obtaining coronavirus testing or treatment will not count as a penalty under the public charge rule. Congress also provided urgently-needed cash relief for lower-income Americans, but did not include immigrant taxpayers who file taxes with an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). In 2015, 4.35 million people paid over $13.7 billion in net taxes using an ITIN, according to the American Immigration Council.

To help ensure that these critical services and resources are available to all Americans, the Coronavirus Immigrant Families Protection Act would, among other things:

  • Modify immigration policies that would deter immigrants from seeking health services for the duration of the coronavirus emergency and for 60 days after the emergency ends, including suspending the public charge rules, in-person ICE checks, the immigration detention and deportation of survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault, and human trafficking who have pending immigration applications; and suspending immigration enforcement actions at or in transit to/from sensitive locations, such as hospitals, courthouses, domestic violence shelters, and other sensitive locations.
  • Ensure that everyone has access to COVID-19 testing, treatment, and vaccines by providing Medicaid coverage of COVID-19-related services to everyone, regardless of immigration status; and prohibiting discrimination in any program funded by a coronavirus relief bill based on actual or perceived immigration status.
  • Provide $100 million for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to provide language access and public outreach on coronavirus preparedness, response, and recovery to hard-to-reach populations—including minorities, those with limited English proficiency, and those with disabilities.
  • Ensure access to COVID relief measures for vulnerable communities by allowing immigrant taxpayers to access cash relief benefits with an individual tax identification number (ITIN); and automatically extending expiring work authorization for immigrants during the coronavirus emergency for the same time period as was previously authorized.

 

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 HUD’s SNAPS Office is holding weekly office hours on Fridays at 2:30pm ET. 

The topic of today’s call is “How to provide trauma informed services to families and children in your homeless and domestic violence shelters during a pandemic” and will be co-hosted by Debbie Fox from National Network to End Domestic Violence and others from the Domestic Violence Housing and Technical Assistance Consortium.

Topics covered could include:

How to support families in providing structure and routines to children who are being homeschooled in shelter.

How to support families if one of the parents/caregivers becomes ill with COVID19.

How to address the specific needs of children and families during a pandemic.

Information about joining is available at: www.hudexchange.info

So often the stigma surrounding mental health issues and therapy prevents Black women from taking the step of seeing a therapist. Created by licensed psychologist, Dr. Joy Harden Bradford, this space was developed to present mental health topics in a way that feels more accessible and relevant.

For more information or to find support in your area, visit their website at www.therapyforblackgirls.com.

The Child Mind Institute is an independent, national nonprofit dedicated to transforming the lives of children and families struggling with mental health and learning disorders. Our teams work every day to deliver the highest standards of care, advance the science of the developing brain and empower parents, professionals and policymakers to support children when and where they need it most.

For more information on how to support you child during COVID-19, visit their website at www.childmind.org.

Action for Healthy Kids is an organization created to help create healthier schools by bringing all the members of a school community together and equipping them with the tools and resources they need to make change happen. The organization is currently offering numerous educational resources for parents and kids during COVID-19.

For more information and to view their resources, visit www.actionforhealthykids.org.

The Administration for Community Living was created around the fundamental principle that older adults and people of all ages with disabilities should be able to live where they choose, with the people they choose, and with the ability to participate fully in their communities.

For more information about seniors and COVID-19, visit their website at www.acl.gov.

Dear Ujima, Inc. Community,

The past few weeks have been a huge challenge for our entire community. Even though our entire team continues to work remotely, our mission to support the Black community remains consistent. As information about COVID-19 continues to develop, we will provide you with timely updates on resources and assistance.

Updated Precautionary Measure for Our Staff

Our management team and staff continue to promote social distancing to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. Ujima staff will work remotely through Friday, May 1, 2020. Please note, that our remote date may be extended based on the recommendations presented by our local government. We are still available to answer any questions, concerns, or requests. If you need to contact one of our staff members, please e-mail us at ujimainfo@ujimacommunity.org.

Ujima, Inc. Outreach and Community Awareness

As a national resource center, it is important that we provide culturally relevant information that supports you! Ujima, Inc. has launched it’s COVID-19 Resource page, located on our website at www.ujimacommunity.org/covid-19. This page will include updates and resources for our community during this difficult time. This page will be updated as new information becomes available.

In addition to the resources provided on our website, please continue to:

  • Follow the guidelines and recommendations set by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
  • If you are able to stay home, please do so and remember to practice social distancing when necessary.
  • Continue to wash your hands with soap and warm water as often as possible and keep your hands away from your face.
  • Lastly, if you are feeling sick, please stay home and contact your doctor for assistance.

We understand how much this “new normal” has disrupted our daily lives, but keep in mind this is not permanent. By following the recommendations of federal, state, and local governmental agencies, we as a community can help “flatten the curve” and save lives. We will continue to monitor the situation and send updates as they become available.

Take care,

Karma Cottman
Executive Director, Ujima, Inc.

 

Additional Resources

Ujima, Inc.
Centers for Disease Control
National Institute of Health
World Health Organization
Do’s and Don’t of Social Distancing

Dear Ujima, Inc. Community,

As many of you know, the world and our community have been rocked by the recent coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. As information about the outbreak continues to develop, we want to provide you with updates around what we are doing to support the community and our team.

Precautionary Measure for Our Staff
In an effort to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, we have implemented our telework policy. Starting Monday, March 16 – Friday, March 27 our entire Ujima staff will be working from home. While no one on our staff has shown symptoms of the virus, our office will be going through a deep clean as a precaution. We are still available to answer any questions, concerns or requests. If you need to contact one of our staff members, please e-mail us at ujimainfo@ujimacommunity.org.

Ujima, Inc. Outreach and Community Awareness
Nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of the community that we serve. As a national resource center, it is our responsibility to provide some support that may help lessen much of the anxiety we know many of you are feeling around the pandemic and the flood of information being provided.

The first step is to make sure you are following the guidelines and recommendations set by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). If you are able to stay home, please do so and remember to practice social distancing when necessary. Continue to wash your hands with soap and warm water when you can and keep your hands away from your face. Lastly, if you are feeling sick, please stay home and contact your doctor for assistance.

We understand how challenging these times can be for everyone. As new details come available, we ask that you remain aware and continue to follow the recommendations set by our federal agencies and local governments. We will continue to monitor the situation and send updates about Ujima, Inc. when they become available.

Take care,

Karma Cottman
Executive Director, Ujima, Inc.

Additional Resources
Ujima, Inc.
Centers for Disease Control
National Institute of Health
World Health Organization
Do’s and Don’t of Social Distancing

For the second year in a row, Ujima, Inc. hosted its Domestic Violence Awareness Month Op-ed Writer’s Workshop. On Saturday, October 5, 2019, in partnership with the Georgetown University Law Fellowship program, Ujima, Inc. continued its work around domestic violence by hosting a workshop that would engage the community and provide best practices on how to write an op-ed for a newspaper, magazine or blog.

Facilitated by Ujima’s very own LisaLyn Jacobs, the workshop explored the importance of op-eds, how to successfully write one and how to pitch your op-ed to editors.

CHANGE THEIR WORLD. CHANGE YOURS. THIS CHANGES EVERYTHING.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response

As we learn about COVID-19 resources and services available, we will be sharing them here.