FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 20, 2021
Sumer Shaikh, Green New Deal Network, email@example.com, 774-545-0128
At Over 70 Events, Activists Called on Lawmakers to ‘Seal the Deal’ Full Infrastructure Package During August Recess
Communities Seek $4.1 Trillion Investment in Climate, Jobs, Care, and Justice
NATIONAL — Yesterday, activists across the country rallied at in-district events, calling on their members of Congress to pass the full jobs and infrastructure package, including $3.5 trillion via the reconciliation process, to invest in climate justice, good job creation, and the care economy. The Green New Deal Network coalition hosted over 75 events, in 36 states, calling on lawmakers to “Seal the Deal” on a full $4.1 trillion jobs and infrastructure package, and not a penny less.
As stated by Senator Ed Markey, in a video supporting #SealTheDeal day of action, “We have a once-in-a- generation opportunity to tackle some of the most pressing challenges our communities face by investing in climate solutions, our care workers, jobs, and critical new measures to fight inequalities. Through August and the fall, I am going to be working with my colleagues in Congress to seal the deal and make sure we pass a strong reconciliation bill that funds our progressive priorities.”
The #SealTheDeal day of action, taking place during the August congressional recess with representatives and senators at home in their districts, was also supported by Rep. Nydia Velazquez (NY-7), Rep. Scott Peters (CA-52), the Women’s March, Rev. Lennox Yearwood, President and CEO of the Hip Hop Caucus, and Randi Weingarten, President of American Federation of Teachers. New York lawmakers also joined activists in support of passing the $3.5T reconciliation package alongside the bipartisan infrastructure plan: Rep. Brain Higgins (NY-26), Rep. Adriano Espaillat (NY-13), Rep. Jerrold Nadler (NY-10), and Rep. Joseph Morelle (NY-25). Rep. Rashida Tlaib (MI-13) joined activists for a virtual #SealTheDeal event.
The national day of action comes at a pivotal moment, ahead of the House’s return to Washington on August 23rd and as a handful of House Democrats are seeking to derail Speaker Pelosi’s plans to pass the reconciliation package alongside the bipartisan infrastructure plan.
“This attempted hijacking of the president’s agenda by a small group of corporate-funded Democrats is about more than price tags, it pits communities against each other,” said Natalia Salgado, Working Families Party Director of Federal Affairs. “These nine members of Congress are an obstructionist caucus, posing as moderates. Gutting the Biden agenda would be a victory for the corporations writing them campaign checks, but a blow to a country in need of just recovery.”
“The climate crisis is here and we feel it every day as deadly heat waves, wildfires, and devastating floods ravage our communities. In the face of this crisis, our Democratic leaders have the chance to pass historic legislation to create millions of good, union jobs to stop climate change and invest in our communities,” said Lauren Maunus, Sunrise Movement Advocacy Director. “Young people with Sunrise, alongside hundreds of activists with other movements for change, turned out at over 75 events across the country today to demand our lawmakers ‘seal the deal’ and kick off the decade of the Green New Deal. We cannot afford any further delay or distractions.”
A bipartisan infrastructure bill, passed in the Senate earlier this month, is not only too small to effectively combat the climate crisis but also fails to adequately protect the health of communities by falling short on: climate change mitigation, replacing lead pipes, electrifying and expanding public transit, retrofitting public buildings, funding a Civilian Climate Corps, investing in care work, and integrating justice and equity standards. Seal the Deal event organizers argued that the bipartisan bill must be complemented by the full level of reconciliation investments authorized by the Senate.
“Communities of color and young voters turned out in record numbers during the last election to elect leaders in office who will respond to the needs of the communities they represent,” explained Adrien Salazar, Policy Director at Grassroots Global Justice Alliance, coalition member of the Green New Deal Network. “People of color and low-wealth communities particularly are suffering the worst in the face of multiple overlapping crises. During this recess our communities are letting our elected representatives know that the time for a historic, just, and equitable recovery is now. Members of Congress must listen to their constituents and pass an infrastructure and jobs plan that prioritizes climate justice investments, expanding the care economy, and good jobs for all.”
About the Green New Deal Network
The Green New Deal Network is a 50-state campaign with a national coordinating table of 15 organizations: Center for Popular Democracy, Climate Justice Alliance, Grassroots Global Justice Alliance, Greenpeace, Indigenous Environmental Network, Indivisible, Movement for Black Lives, MoveOn, People’s Action, Right To The City Alliance, Service Employees International Union, Sierra Club, Sunrise Movement, US Climate Action Network, and the Working Families Party.