Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, August 2, 2021

eviction_scene.jpgMaryland is still lagging in helping local governments get relief to those threatened with eviction as the moratorium on evictions expired at midnight Saturday. Gov. Hogan and the sometimes-contradictory federal program(s) do not help. Get the least confusing information and help here, in the Memo. And share it. Keep people housed in our communities.

Thank you for being part of this movement. 



 

Maryland is still lagging in helping local governments get relief to those threatened with eviction as the moratorium on evictions expired at midnight Saturday. Gov. Hogan and the sometimes-contradictory federal program(s) do not help. Get the least confusing information and help here, in the Memo. And share it. Keep people housed in our communities.

Thank you for being part of this movement. 

In Solidarity,

The PM Team

Quick Actions:

Statewide Updates:

Healthcare Justice Campaign 

Medicare Expansion:

Tuesday night August 3 from 6:30-9 PM People’s Action is hosting a phonebank to support efforts in the US Senate to expand Medicare coverage. We have the opportunity over the next few weeks to win expansions of Medicare that will improve millions of people’s lives while bringing us one step closer to Medicare for All. 

Join People’s Action Tuesday evenings in August for phonebanking with other members of the Health Care for All team from around the country. And don't worry if you haven't phonebanked before! We will run through a brief training at the beginning of each session talking about the issue, script, and how to use the tech.

We will connect with folks in New Jersey to drive calls to Senator Menendez and make sure he gets the message that his constituents cannot wait any longer for him to expand Medicare. Click here to RSVP

 

DMV Action -- TOMORROW: (Tuesday, August 3) noon-2 at the Capitol in DC, Rally for Voting Rights: “Recess can Wait: Democracy Can’t” -- Congress MUST pass the For The People Act, of which Rep. John Sarbanes is a prime sponsor. State legislators are joining this rally.  Register Here.

 

Local Chapter Updates:

Progressive Montgomery

Want to get involved with our local economic, health and environmental justice campaigns? 

Please contact Josh this week!

 

Progressive Harford County 

Thank you to everyone who attended the happy hour for Progressive Harford County and the Young Democrats of Harford County at TB3 Bar & Grill -- now it's time to get the four committees (field, outreach, communications and research) active and doing grassroots work for Progressive Harford County.
Voting for the Progressive Harford County logo closes tomorrow, August 3 at 5 p.m. Weigh in to help decide the look and design for the chapter.

The New Era Project coming to Harford County is right around the corner. Reserve your spot during our event on August 12 from 6:30-8 p.m. at the Havre de Grace Colored School Museum & Cultural Center. We need bold progressives at all levels of government in Harford County and across Maryland. The New Era Project can train and fund campaigns to help make that happen.


Statewide Justice Task Force General Meeting

The Justice Task Force will be hosting a general meeting on Tuesday, August 10th at 7pm. Join us to hear some updates about our We’re Not Bluffing Campaign for police reform, plans for the next General Assembly, and how to get involved with our work. RSVP here to receive the Zoom link.

 

Progressive Baltimore County -- Contact Zach

 

Anne Arundel Fair Elections Taskforce

The Fair Elections TaskForce is holding our next Canvass Training tomorrow August 3rd at 6pm. Sign up here to learn how to canvass for Fair Elections! You can also join us on August 17th at 6:30pm for the next Fair Elections Taskforce Meeting by registering here.

State and National News:  

Economic Justice For Marylanderseviction_scene.jpg

Housing and the eviction crisis: The CDC’s eviction moratorium expired over the weekend after the House failed to pass a new moratorium while the administration said Pres. Biden couldn’t extend it by executive action because of a recent Supreme Court decision. Meanwhile millions of tenants remain behind on their rent, so it’s going to be more and more important to help get eligible people access to the Emergency Rental Assistance Funds. As of early July, 7.4 million US renter households were behind on rent, according to Census Bureau data. Some 3.6 million said they were “somewhat likely” or “very likely” to face eviction in the next two months. 

The Sun reportsMaryland has been allocated more than $700 million from two rounds of federal funds for emergency rental assistance. Much of it has gone to the state while some has been sent directly to local governments. A large portion remains to help. State officials say about $49 million has been spent so far, and they have established a call center (877-546-5595) for renters seeking relief. 

Coordination with local jurisdictions remains a problem. MoCo exec Marc Elrich told Maryland Matters that “ ever-changing federal guidelines on how to distribute different pots of rent relief have only further complicated local efforts to stave off evictions. “The federal government managed to create guidelines that make it harder to get money out, even though they gave us the money,” Elrich said. Statewide, “tenant advocates point out that there are about 5,500 judgments for evictions that will be entered sometime in the next 30 to 45 days,” the Sun article said. Maryland Matters added “An estimated 129,000 households in Maryland are behind on rent in Maryland, according to the National Equity Atlas, which uses Census Bureau and other data, and an estimated 78% of those households are people of color, and 62% make less than $50,000 a year.” Both the Sun and Maryland Matters offer an updated deep dive into the eviction crisis and remedies available. A full list of local and state rent relief programs can be found here.

 

National notes from People’s Action (our national affiliate)

We have an opportunity to win a  game-changing expansion of Medicare benefits in the federal Budget Reconciliation process. Serious negotiations to add dental, hearing, and vision care to Medicare are in the works for what’s included in the final measure. Please add your voice and  sign this petition to  the U.S. Senate: ppls.ac/expandmedicare. Questions? Ask Malcolm:  [email protected]

 

Checks for the Child Tax Credit are still arriving in bank accounts of those households that have filed tax returns -- but up to ten percent of eligible households won’t get it routinely because they don’t file/don’t have to file. So they may not know about this important form of support.  Get the word out! Use this Non-filer Sign-up Tool Help Guide (PDF - English and Spanish). This guide tells people what to gather ahead of time and walks people step-by-step through filling out the Tool. 

 

Support drug decriminalization: Reps. Bonnie Watson-Coleman & Cori Bush recently introduced the Drug Policy Reform Act of 2021 - the first federal drug decriminalization bill. Check this summary of the contents of the bill here.  

 

The Green New Deal and public schools: To fill out the two-track strategic approach in the reconciliation package, Rep. Jamaal Bowman (NY) has just dropped a bill linking the Green New Deal to schools recovery and resiliency with a strong through-line of union empowerment. HR 4442 now has 40 co-sponsors, including Maryland Rep. Jamie Raskin. Organizations including national Democratic Socialists of America are building a rapid-response strategic approach to get this in the reconciliation package. The organizing opportunities linking this national bill to our Blueprint for Maryland’s Future school improvement plan are unmistakable. Note: Rep. Kweisi Mfume on the Education and Labor Committee is not on board at last posting; he and other Md. legislators need to hear about this critical bill.

 

Events from Our Allies:

 

DMV Action -- TOMORROW: Tuesday, August 3 noon-2 at the Capitol in DC, Rally for Voting Rights: “Recess can Wait: Democracy Can’t” -- Congress MUST pass the For The People Act, of which Rep. John Sarbanes is a prime sponsor. State legislators are joining this rally.  Register Here.

Thursday, August 5 | 1pm | Health Policy Insights — Advancing Health Equity (Maryland)

Virtual panel and webinar on solving health disparities — Maryland Center on Economic Policy -- sign up up at link.

 

Progressive Maryland BlogSpace:

We value creating space for our members to express their thoughts on any issues related to our campaigns. Have an idea for a blog post? You can submit writing, film, graphic design etc. to be published on our website to the blog moderator, Woody, at [email protected].  

Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, July 26, 2021

Medicare For All is making more sense to more and more people (it has always made sense to us). Montgomery’s Council joined many others in backing it last week. Just in time for its birthday Friday, July 30. 

July 21, 2021 MoCo Council adds biggest county to those backing Medicare for All

Montgomery County Council passes a resolution calling on Congress to enact Medicare For All.

Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, July 19, 2021

Medicare for All is making more sense to more and more people (it has always made sense to us). Resolutions backing the national campaign passed in Annapolis’ council last week and looks to pass in Montgomery’s council this week. July 16, 2021 The War on Drugs is a war on people like me

"The War on Drugs has been with us for more than fifty years, and hasn’t been a war on drugs at all. It’s been a war on people: people like me, and my family. Black people.” 

July 13, 2021  Hogan admin stymied in attempt at early Unemployment Insurance cutoff

Enhanced unemployment benefits provided by the Biden administration will last at least well into August despite attempts by Larry Hogan to burnish his credentials as a standard GOP scourge of working families by unilaterally discontinuing their payment. Justice (and judges) prevail.

-Progressive Maryland Weekly Memo for Monday, July 12, 2021

June 25, 2021 Unfinished business in the Assembly: where is the progressive impulse?

A former progressive member of the Maryland General Assembly asks: Why doesn’t more progressive legislation get passed in the General Assembly? 

June 23, 2021 How the War on Drugs has warped priorities and ruined lives for 50 years

We're passing the post on the 50th Anniversary of the start of the War on Drugs. After enduring 50 years of the War on Drugs and witnessing its devastating effects on our communities, we feel it is important to change this policy now and pursue a public health and harm reduction approach. Join us to make change in this crucial area.