Build Back Better

I have to admit. My memories of 2020 are nothing to, well, remember.  In fact, I pretty much erased the events only retaining the overwhelming rollercoaster of emotions.  How about you?

The American Rescue Plan has me re-engaging with life. President Biden’s plan is as ambitious as FDRs was under the New Deal.  Like the New Deal, President Biden’s government expansion provides active roles for local and state governments bringing new life to the “Think Global, Act Local” mantra.

President Biden’s career in public service certainly informed the goals set forth in The American Rescue Plan.  There is so much in this $1.9 billion proposal restoring dignity and compassion using the levers of government – taxes and programs.

The House of Representatives recently passed the plan as written by the Biden administration.  Now comes the heavy lift of acceptance by an evenly divided Senate.

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Support for Families

Let’s be honest, our country cannot survive if we don’t invest in the future.  This plan does that on so many levels. The Biden Plan includes money to restart our schools, restoring and expanding high-quality childcare and support for working parents.  I applaud the strong commitment to rebuilding our infrastructure and protecting the environment so that our child’s children have a fighting chance to live a life that our Founders envisioned.

Support for Vulnerable People

However, I believe we need this same commitment from cradle to grave.  It is just to provide families with the financial and legal supports to raise our next generations but what about upholding the dignity and quality of life for our retirees?

We know the 53 million family caregivers are burning their candles at both ends right now. For those holding full-time employment and caregiving simultaneously, the breaking point is just around the corner.  Researchers continue to paint the picture of cultural, socio-economic, and other factors that drive who and how we care for family members.  These are the lucky ones.  The number of vulnerable people who do not have a social network or family able and willing to care is rapidly growing.

Again, the American Rescue Plan is the opportunity to right the ship in our local communities. I want to make 2021 count, how about you?  Let’s use this year and this plan to re-create communities of care from cradle to grave for all people. It is time to Build Back Better.

Let’s Get to Work,

Monica Stynchula, MSW, MPH

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