The following is a statement from Scott Faber, EWG’s senior vice president for government affairs, on the COVID-19 relief package released today by Senate Republicans:
The relief package released today by Senate Republicans fails to provide what’s needed to protect food and farm workers from COVID-19 or to address the needs of families struggling with hunger. Many of the people who feed us are especially susceptible to the coronavirus sweeping the nation. So far, at least 58,000 workers have contracted the virus, and at least 249 have died.
Instead of feeding hungry families or protecting workers, Senate Republicans have proposed to provide $20 billion in new subsidies to farmers – on top of roughly $35 billion already flowing to farmers this year. These funds have overwhelmingly flowed to the largest and most successful farmers.
Congress must ensure that food and farm workers have protective gear, access to COVID-19 testing, and sick and hazard pay. Congress must also increase the standard SNAP benefit to help ensure every family has enough to eat. Legislators must do more to protect our food supply chain and the people who help feed us at great personal risk to themselves.