The economic damage wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic is just beginning. With many businesses closed or operating at only partial capacity, state tax revenues have plummeted, while costs related to fighting the pandemic have soared. As a result, in the coming year, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts is facing a potential $8 BILLION budget shortfall.
The question now is, who will bear the brunt of addressing this shortfall? Will the state slash safety net programs for those in need? Will families that have already lost jobs - and are in danger of losing their homes - also lose essential services?
Because of the impacts of structural racism, the COVID-19 pandemic has already exacted a harsh toll on Black and Latinx communities, which have suffered the highest rates of death from the virus. It has also impacted essential workers, many of whom are low-wage earners who lack adequate paid sick time and are more likely to work under conditions that can expose them to risk.
We refuse to accept the idea that these communities should also bear the burden of balancing the state budget. Please join with us and others across the state and take action today to prevent further harm to communities already suffering from the health and economic impacts of COVID-19.
- SIGN the Invest in our Recovery Sign-on Letter, which calls on state legislators to raise significant new revenue from profitable corporations and their shareholders before making any further state budget cuts. If you represent an organization that would like to join this campaign, please sign this Organizational Letter.
- Join us on Labor Day in person or online for the Workers Rally for a Just Recovery on Monday, September 7 starting at 11:00 am. There are three ways to participate:
- Pop-Up Drive-in: Starts at 11:00 am
- State House Action in Person: Arrive at 11:30 am
- Digitally/online For more information and to RSVP, please click here.
- Spread the Word to your friends and family by forwarding this email!
Large corporations and their wealthy shareholders have used loopholes, tax breaks, and weak corporate disclosure laws to avoid paying their fair share of taxes for years. And just in the last four years, large corporations have received federal tax cuts worth billions of dollars a year in Massachusetts alone.
During each of the last three recessions, MA lawmakers avoided deeper budget cuts by raising $1.1 billion to $2.5 billion in new revenue, delayed planned tax reductions, and/or reduced tax breaks for corporations. Raising progressive revenue - revenue from those who can afford to pay - is a proven strategy to avoid the most damaging budget cuts.
Lawmakers have a choice: they can institute deep budget cuts that will drive us deeper into a recession and exacerbate racial and economic inequities, or they can invest in public services that improve public health, grow our economy, and reduce racial inequality.
This year, the budget may be the most important piece of public health legislation that is passed. We are going to need to work together to demand a budget that reflects our values, responds to the needs of our communities, and puts us on a path to greater prosperity and equity.
Thank you for your partnership in this critical effort,