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Biden announces $1.9trn emergency package to battle COVID-19

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US President-elect, Joe Biden on Thursday announced $1.9 trillion emergency package to combat the coronavirus pandemic and boost economic recovery.

The president-elect has asked the Congress to approve the package.

The package will provide for $1,400-per-person checks for millions of Americans, enhanced unemployment benefits, $25 billion in rental assistance, and an extension of a federal eviction moratorium until the end of January.

Included also in the plan is $130 billion to reopen schools for in-person learning and $20 billion for a national vaccination programme.

Speaker, House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi says when Biden was elected, he told the American people that “help is on the way.”

“With the COVID-rescue package the President-elect announced today, he is moving swiftly to deliver that help and to meet the needs of the American people,” she said.

“American families face an extraordinary combination of health and economic crises – from COVID-19 to racial inequality to climate change – all of which demand big, bold and immediate action.  The emergency relief framework announced by the incoming Biden-Harris Administration tonight is the right approach.  It shows that Democrats will finally have a partner at the White House that understands the need to take swift action to address the needs of struggling communities.

We will get right to work to turn President-elect Biden’s vision into legislation that will pass both chambers and be signed into law.

After Congress passed the most recent emergency COVID-relief bill in December, Democrats were clear that much more needed to be done,” she  added.

According to her, “We are pleased the Biden-Harris package includes much of what Congressional Democrats have been fighting for, including an increase in direct payments to $2,000 for American families, support for vaccine distribution and testing, additional aid to small businesses, funding to safeguard state and local jobs, extension of unemployment benefits, help for renters and children in poor and middle-class families and more.

The development of multiple COVID-19 vaccines was a tremendous scientific breakthrough, and it means that recovery is on the horizon.  But our country is still suffering some of the highest rates in the entire world of infections, hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19.

“These proposals by the Biden-Harris Administration will be critical to getting our country through this challenging period and towards a period of recovery.  We echo the President-elect’s call for bipartisan action on his proposal and hope that our Republican colleagues will work with us to quickly enact it.”

Pelosi said the final jobs report of the Trump Administration issued last week was a bright red warning sign that the economy needed additional help right away.

She stated that “We’ve now lost more than 385,000 Americans to COVID-19, millions of Americans have lost their jobs and are looking for work, hundreds of thousands of small businesses have closed, frontline workers are being laid off and communities across the country are on the brink of collapse.

The robust package announced by President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris shows we now have the necessary leadership in the Executive Branch to turn this around and we are ready to get to work to deliver aid without delay.”

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