We are in the midst of one of the greatest challenges our nation and the world has ever faced. This is a time where we (virtually) need to come together and support each other, but especially the most vulnerable among us.
At ASBC, we have heard from numerous responsible business leaders about how this crisis is impacting them. Many are considering or already implementing staffing reductions, furloughs, lay-offs and other measures. Some plan to continue paying hourly workers who are unable to come into work, as well as pay for their employees' health insurance for as long as they possibly can. Many will need new credit for these unforeseen costs. Government assistance as designed in the bill currently before Congress will help. But we know that for many it will be too little or too late.
We feel privileged at ASBC to work with responsible business leaders like you, committed to doing their best by employees, communities and the planet. As we turn our policy work to focus on the health and economic crisis in front of us, we want to make sure we address issues impacting you and others in the responsible business community.
Please take a minute to let us know what’s on your mind and how ASBC can help. We look forward to your suggestions as well as hearing about your challenges.
For the immediate term, please know we are fighting hard for the support you and your employees need in this current federal legislation. I’ve attached a memo outlining many of the policy issues related to the COVID-19 virus on which we are working.
As Business for Medicare for All recently highlighted, “This crisis has revealed the fragility of our national economy. About 40% of all Americans are one paycheck away from poverty. Tens of millions of people have no health insurance and countless more are under-insured. Lay-offs and business closings will only make those numbers balloon.”
In times like these, the absence of sensible and responsible public policy puts our economy and our nation at greater risk. Beyond unacceptable healthcare costs and coverage, we lack the social safety net our employees require and the financial security that they can depend upon. As businesses we will be challenged to access the credit required for us to remain in business and cannot depend on our government to fairly support small and medium sized companies with the financial support we will require to manage through this crisis.
No doubt many aspects of our daily lives and our daily activities will be dramatically changed during and following this public health crisis. Sensible, fair and sustainable public policy is required for a nation like ours to weather a storm like this.
Please be assured that ASBC will continue to work with you and for you to enact the support required for the safe and healthy future for your company, your employees and all of the extended ASBC family. With your input, your help and your support, we will keep working toward helping getting us all through this crisis, as I know we will.
Please stay safe and stay in touch.
Jeffrey Hollender CEO & Co-founder American Sustainable Business Council