Attention has been riveted to negotiations over the current HEALS Act currently in the Senate. How would this new act impact unemployed Americans? What would the repercussions be in terms of housing, for both renters and homeowners? This episode explores these issues and others, bringing attention to where some of HEALS Act’s money is designated, namely upgrades to the White House.
Guests Nataki Close, founder of Take a Stand Tally and the Tampa Bay Relief Effort, and Zanagee Artis, co-founder and advocacy director of Zero Hour, join Our Future Now co-hosts Natalie Mebane
and Jonah Gottlieb to compare the Republican-sponsored HEALS Act to a competing Democratic proposal called the HEROS Act — differences described as reckless and dangerous.
What’s at stake? Life and death when considering lowering the weekly unemployment bump from $600 to $200. Such a move forces workers to return to jobs and unsafe workplaces, potentially putting their lives at risk and leaving them, and their families, with no legal recourse should they get sick or die.
“They just don’t care; they’re just saying the ‘quiet’ part out loud now,” Gottlieb remarks on this blatant move by Senate Republicans that will see workers having to choose health and livelihood over jobs.
Then there’s the possibility of 40 million in the nation facing homelessness. With the HEALS Act’s emphasis on opening economy, those without jobs to go back to could lose their homes, making it impossible to find work without an address and internet access. “They’re not thinking about everyday American,” Mebane says.
“This bill [HEALS Act] has the power to influence the future of young people in this country,” Artis says.
With this in mind, the episode encourages making voices heard, pointing to Vote4OurFuture as an avenue for doing just that.
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The Our Future Now Collaboration
Our Future Now, a National Children’s Campaign Podcast is co-hosted by Jonah Gottlieb and Natalie Mebane. Gottlieb and Mebane are also co-founders of NCC. Gottlieb, a high school senior from Petaluma, California, is also the captain of One Planet Living and the co-founder and president of Global Awareness. Mebane is the Associate Director of US Policy for 350, an international movement looking to end the use of fossil fuels while promoting renewable energy.
Our Future Now is a collaboration between Parentology, the National Children’s Campaign and Goal 17 Media.
The National Children’s Campaign (NCC) is a national nonprofit organization that amplifies the voices of America’s 74 million children and youth, making sure our nation’s political leaders prioritize issues –health, education, climate and environment, child welfare, gun violence, child immigration, LGBTQ+ rights, and youth civic engagement — that matter to those who are too young to vote. You can read more about today’s episode on the NCC blog here.
Goal 17 Media is a media network producing podcasts, videos and documentaries that inspire individuals and contribute to the common good.