HEROES Act could save jobs

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Congress needs to pass the HEROES Act to lighten the deficits faced by states, including Minnesota. The relief funds would minimize job losses and cuts to services Minnesotans depend on due to the economic impacts brought on by COVID-19. The U.S. House passed the HEROES Act. The U.S. Senate has not taken up the bill yet. Contact Senators Klobuchar and Smith and ask for their support of this jobs-saving bill.

Minnesota faces a budget deficit and needs federal assistance to avoid further agency job loss. MAPE members have advocated for deficiency funding for months as DOC facilities across Minnesota battled COVID-19 outbreaks. During last month’s special session, the Legislature failed to pass funding to close DOC’s $14 million deficit or allocate $25 million to the Department of Human Services’ Direct Care and Treatment programs to care for Minnesota’s most vulnerable.

While the deficiency funding was passed twice by the House, it never passed the Senate.

“MAPE is disappointed that the Legislature failed to pass deficiency funding for corrections and direct care and treatment programs, forcing the DOC to close the Togo and Willow River prisons,” MAPE President Megan Dayton said.

“MAPE members at DOC always work hard to keep Minnesotans safe, and have been on the frontline for months trying to keep them safe from COVID-19. Deadly outbreaks are occurring at our correctional facilities and employees continue to perform their jobs, often at great personal risk to themselves and their families,”  Dayton added. “The decision to close two correctional facilities in Greater Minnesota is short-sighted and will have lasting impacts on these communities.”