COVID Solidarity Fund: We've done our part, will the Governor do his?

Over the past three weeks, Migrant Justice distributed nearly $200,000 to over 400 members of Vermont’s immigrant farmworker community. We created our COVID Solidarity Fund to meet the needs of a community that has been unjustly excluded from federal relief during the pandemic.

We would like to thank the Vermont Community Foundation, Ben & Jerry’s, Justice for Migrant Women and Hispanics in Philanthropy, Food Chain Workers Alliance, Oak Foundation and NEO Philanthropy, the Middlebury Congregational Church, and the many individuals who made the solidarity fund possible.

Though we are proud of our ability to provide this necessary relief to so many, we also know that private donations are an inadequate response to a public health crisis. Our efforts could not reach all excluded workers in Vermont, and payments did not rise to the $1,200 that others received in stimulus funds from the federal government. ​

The Trump administration and Congress have unjustly excluded immigrant families from federal relief. But that doesn’t mean that Vermont has to follow suit. For months we have been calling on the Governor and legislators to create an “Immigrant Families Coronavirus Relief Fund” to issue individual payments directly to those left out of the federal stimulus.

Due to our efforts, over 50 representatives and senators have signaled their support. This is a great start, but it’s not enough. We need to let our state elected officials know that Vermont’s response to the pandemic must include all of us.

On Tuesday August 18th, Governor Phil Scott will announce his budget proposal for the remainder of fiscal year 2021 (beginning this October). He needs to hear from you that this is a priority for the state.

Call Governor Phil Scott today at 802-828-3333 and urge the Governor to include the Immigrant Families COVID Relief Fund in his 2021 budget, because immigrants are essential!