More than 19 thousand individuals joined in on a live telephone town hall hosted by Congresswoman Maxine Waters to discuss the Coronavirus pandemic. Thursday, March 19, the masses gathered to gain insightful information that is and will be affecting Los Angeles residents’ immediate surroundings and future.
The telephone town hall included an overview from Congresswoman Waters regarding the actions Congress has taken to place families first. Waters was joined by representatives of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, Los Angeles County Metro, Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, LA Regional Food Bank, Watts Health Care, South Bay Family Health Clinic, UMMA Community Clinic, and representatives from all school districts in the 43rd District: the Inglewood, Los Angeles, Torrance, Centinela Valley, Lawndale, Hawthorne, Lennox, and Wiseburn school districts.
“I am so pleased by the overwhelming number of my constituents who were able to join us for an important community-wide telephone town hall meeting discussing the coronavirus pandemic,” Congresswoman Waters said in a statement after the telephone town hall. “As our nation grapples with the unprecedented health and economic challenges presented by this pandemic, it is imperative that our community is well-informed about the efforts that the federal, state and local government is taking on their behalf. This call is the first of many that my office will host to ensure that my constituents have direct access to the information and resources they need to support themselves and their families during this highly unusual and chaotic time.”
The conversation touched on various topics relating to the economy during this time, health concerns and government assistance to nearly every American. She also unveiled her committee’s stimulus proposal which is strongly being considered as a third package the House will vote on this week.
“I am proposing a comprehensive plan to bolster the economy during this pandemic and allow people to quarantine safely in their homes,” she stated during the town hall. Her stimulus proposal includes providing $2,000 per month for every adult and $1,000 per month for every child. A ban on evictions, foreclosures, and repossessions nationwide. The suspension of all consumer credit payments for car notes, student loans, and credit cards. $5 billion for emergency homeless assistance; $1 billion for emergency medical supplies; and $300 million for senior assistance coordinators.
Next, the Congresswoman focused on Los Angeles where her guests shared proper precautions and measures they are following to ensure safety and health among the population. Topics included access to testing sites in Los Angeles County, as well as food resources for seniors and children. Resources for healthcare workers, firefighters, and other first responders, as well as steps necessary to protect families from COVID-19.
“I’m proud of the leadership in California, beginning with Governor Gavin Newsom who issued several executive orders to assist the most vulnerable by making sure current recipients of safety net programs will continue receiving them without interruption,” she stated. “Governor Newsom has also authorized 150 million in funding to protect homeless California from COVID-19.”
“California has launched a new comprehensive, consumer-friendly, one-stop state website, www. COVID19.ca.gov. Now, Californians can find information in one location on how to apply for disability benefits, paid family leave, and where small businesses can get help,” she continued.
“I was very happy to learn that both the County and City of Los Angeles have and are making plans to declare a moratorium on efficient, residential, and commercial property. Utility bill relief and assistance to small businesses, including layoffs, aversion and assistance with emergency loans,” Congresswoman Waters shared. For more information, you can visit lacounty.gov/COVID19 or just call 211.
Before closing, Congresswoman Waters expressed, “These are unusual times; we’ve never experienced anything quite like this. And we have to learn how to do things a little bit differently. The very basic things that the doctor and everybody has been telling us about washing your hands and washing them often,” including the importance of sneezing and coughing into a sleeve rather than your hand, social distancing and “to understand what the symptoms are. When to call your doctor. When to be able to describe very adequately what your symptoms are so a decision can be made about how to refer you or to tell you what to do.”
Each precautionary measure is extremely important. Pleased with the impact of the telephone town hall and the community involvement, Congresswoman Waters says she would like to produce another in the near future. “I think that we can conquer this virus if we pay attention [and] listen to the experts.”
Reassuring the people that she leads and represents, she closed the call with a promise to the people. “I’m going to be fighting for a cash infusion into our society, so that we can stimulate the economy. Take care of those who may be laid off, aside from their jobs and have been living from paycheck to paycheck and have no savings, etc. I’m going to insist on insightful, an infusion of cash to our citizens to the degree that I can.”
For more information visit waters.house.gov to gather information shared during the call.