Fall 2020 Actions
September 1, 2020: Census and Jacob Blake
- Make sure you are counted by completing the 2020 Census! If you have not already done so, go to https://2020census.gov/en.html to respond today – counting ends on September 3rd. Once you’re done, spread the word to everyone else – friends, family, neighbors and co-workers – and make sure they respond too.
The United States Census counts the population in the United States and five U.S. territories (Puerto Rico, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands). Mandated by the Constitution and conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau, the count takes place once every 10 years. Responses to the census are kept anonymous and the U.S. Census Bureau is bound by law to keep the answers strictly confidential. The count provides critical data to support communities, allocate federal funding and determine the number of seats each state will have in the U.S. House of Representatives. Don’t delay, your response matters!
- Last week, Rusten Sheskey, a Kenosha (WI) police officer, shot Jacob Blake at least seven times in his back in front of his children. The 29-year-old father of five is now paralyzed from the waist down. Sign here to demand that Sheskey is immediately fired and arrested:
September 8, 2020- ACA protection
The Affordable Care Act has led to historic gains in the number of Americans with access to comprehensive health insurance coverage. However, the recent Texas v. U.S. court case ( https://www.kff.org/health-reform/issue-brief/explaining-california-v-texas-a-guide-to-the-case-challenging-the-aca/) threatens to dismantle the ACA entirely, which would result in loss of health care access for millions of Americans. As Congress nears the end of the summer recess, contact your representatives and urge them to strengthen the ACA and support the law’s critical Prevention and Public Health Fund: https://www.apha.org/policies-and-advocacy/advocacy-for-public-health/action-alerts/protecting-aca
September 15, 2020- Health Equity Response to COVID-19, No Cost Calls
1) COVID-19 has shaken our inertia of being an inequitable society. In this current moment, our public health work must focus on the social and structural determinants of health. This Tuesday, please have a look at a wonderful resource (https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1mUOmJK_bSP3hlcUYPWsKMsSo_fHQDdnOe5ayECLuxvA/edit#gid=412443731), put together by two NGOs namely Public Health Awakened and the Spirit of 1848 and use this for supporting a health equity response to COVID-19. They have vital resources on mutual aid, housing/unhoused people, physical distancing, racism/xenophobia, local health departments, older adults/seniors, climate / environmental justice, paid leave/worker advocacy, children/family care, intimate partner violence, LGBTQ+, indigenous folks etc.
2) S2846 for no cost phone calls in MA prisons still has not gone to the Senate floor for a vote. This bill would help families stay connected to their incarcerated loved ones, preventing them from having to choose between phone calls or food and rent. Join Families for Justice as Healing and the Building Up People Not Prisons Coalition in demanding that our representatives make a real commitment to racial justice:
- Find your legislators here: https://malegislature.gov/search/findmylegislator
- Call your State Rep
- Call your State Senator
- REPORT BACK HERE: http://bit.ly/nocostcallsresponses
- Look up your legislators’ social media and post up!
Script: My name is _____ and I am your constituent and a voter. I am urging you to take immediate action to pass No Cost Calls legislation with no compromises and no additional funding for Sheriffs. These phone charges are pushing families further into poverty and debt. It’s unacceptable to keep using families as a revenue source to fund corrections, particularly during a pandemic and economic crisis. What actions will you take to advocate for S.2846 to come to the floor for a vote? Will you vote yes on S2846?
3) With the general election quickly approaching, double check your voter registration and make sure you’ve requested a mail-in ballot if needed! https://www.vote.org/
September 22, 2020- Delaying Replacement of Justice Ginsburg, Palantir Contract with ICE
1) This past week we lost Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, an icon for civil rights and a trailblazer who inspired millions to fight against sexism and discrimination. She spent 27 years on the Court fighting for advancement of gender equality, and protection of voting and workers’ rights, affirmative action and LGBTQ+ equality. On the day of her death, Mitch McConnell announced his plans to bring her replacement to a vote on the Senate floor as soon as possible. With only weeks left until the election, demand that your Senators wait until after the inauguration of the next President to replace Justice Ginsburg. Click here to sign the petition and send a message to your Senators.
2) Palantir is a tech company whose contracts with ICE enable the agency to build lists of people to find and arrest. They’re hoping to raise more money by going public on September 23. Click here and sign in with your Twitter account, join the #NoTechforICE campaign, and tweet with the hashtag #DefundPalantir to demand that Palantir cancels their ICE contracts.
September 29, 2020- Health Equity Acts
This Tuesday, contact your Congress members and urge them to sponsor the Health Equity and Accountability Act of 2020 and the Improving Social Determinants of Health Act of 2020. The Health Equity and Accountability Act would strengthen data collection, create new opportunities in the health workforce, improve access to culturally-competent care, and expand services to communities that need them the most. The Improving Social Determinants of Health Act would create a new Social Determinants of Health program at the CDC to address health equity and provide grant awards for research on social determinants of health best practices. Use the action tool at https://apha.org/policies-and-advocacy/advocacy-for-public-health/action-alerts/health-equity to show your representatives that health equity legislation is especially important during this time.
October 6, 2020- Voter Registration
There are FOUR more Take Action Tuesdays until the US presidential election. You already know that at this critical time, every single vote matters. Over the next four Tuesdays, we want to make sure you have everything you need to successfully cast your vote on time. Click the links below for quick and easy voter resources, and as always, please share with friends, family, and colleagues!
- Check your registration
- Register to vote
- Vote by mail/absentee
- Get election reminders
- Pledge to register (for those < 18)
- Locate your polling place
- Become a poll worker
- Fill out your 2020 census
October 13, 2020- Voter Registration, Abortion Access
This Tuesday, take action to protect abortion access in Massachusetts. With the future of the Supreme Court and reproductive health care at stake, MA must pass the ROE Act to eliminate barriers that disproportionately harm Black and brown people, young people, people with low incomes, immigrants, and LGBTQ+ people. Use this form to email your representatives asking them to ensure that everyone in our Commonwealth can access abortion care without political interference — no matter their address, age, or immigration status: https://www.weareplannedparenthoodaction.org/VelrFy7ugkuzecJVmDyn7A2
October 20, 2020- Voter Registration, Abortion Access (see October 5)
October 27, 2020- Voter Registration, Abortion Access (see October 5)
November 3, 2020- Voter Registration, Abortion Access (see October 5)
November 10, 2020- None
November 17, 2020- Massachusetts Public Health Standards and Budget
Massachusetts State Senator Jo Comerford is filing an amendment to the Senate budget to 1) establish a model uniform set of minimum local public health performance standards to ensure that every MA resident has access to a core set of public health protections, and 2) allocate a statewide sustainable local public health budget to support all municipalities to meet these standards. As the COVID-19 crisis rages on, Senator Comerford needs your support now more than ever for this amendment to pass in the senate.
- Call/Email your State Senator & ask them to support local public health in the FY21 state budget
- Click here to find your state senator and their contact info
- See below for a sample email and talking points
- Share this Action Alert with your Networks
- This is all hands on deck! Forward this action alert to your networks and ask them to spend a few minutes making a call or sending an email.
Sample phone/email script for calling your State Senator:
(and it’s OK to leave a voicemail!)
Hi, my name is __________. I live/work in Senator _________’s district. May I speak to Senator ______ or their staff?
I am calling/writing to ask you to co-sponsor Amendment #219 for outside section language by Senator Comerford to improve and invest in our local public health system. Now is the time to move rapidly to accelerate improvements to our local public health system to adequately protect public health and safety during the remainder of the COVID-19 crisis and for future threats to public health. To address these challenges, I ask that you support the following amendment in the FY21 state budget:
Amendment #219 by Sen. Comerford – is outside section language directing the Department of Public Health to establish a model uniform set of minimum local public health performance standards to ensure that every resident of the Commonwealth has access to a core set of public health protections, along with an estimated statewide sustainable local public health budget to support all municipalities to meet these standards. These are critical components that will move Massachusetts towards a 21st century local public health system.
Will you support this amendment in the FY21 budget?
As always, please share with your personal and professional circles!
November 24, 2020- None
December 1, 2020- Emergency Rental Assistance
This week, take action by urging your senators and representatives to support emergency rental assistance. The economic impact of COVID-19 has made housing in America more uncertain for millions already struggling to pay rent: One in five renters in the U.S. will be at risk of eviction by the end of September unless Congress acts now. Click here to contact your senators and representatives via email, and as always please share in your personal and professional circles
December 8, 2020- COVID-19 Response
Take action this week by supporting the Massachusetts COVID-19 Response Alliance. The goal of this coalition is to advocate a people-centered approach to the state’s COVID-19 response that grants immediate relief and fosters a just long-term recovery that supports the hardest-hit communities.
- To learn more about MCRA and how to get involved, click here.
- To call on Governor Baker to diversify his Advisory Board to include voices of families, frontline workers, and health experts, click here.
As always, please feel free to share with your personal and professional circles.
Last Updated: January 20, 2021