FUND THE FRONT LINES?
Thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, state and local governments are experiencing a huge budget crunch. We have two choices: either the federal government can help by funding the front lines or our communities will suffer grave consequences.
What kinds of consequences? Cuts to the essential services we rely on. If you were running a city or a state, what difficult choices would you make?
Cut Public Works
Cut Public SCHOOLS
Cut emergency services
Cut infrastructure spending
Click and choose what to cut...
and see the consequences of your actions.
Great choice! Trash pickup is cut back after you lay off half the public works department. Everyone loves to see garbage piling up — it smells terrific and is definitely good for public health. And – whoops! — delayed maintenance creates water main breaks and sewage backups, which cost you more than the layoffs saved you!
Excellent decision! First you get rid of teachers’ aides and paraprofessionals, leaving schools understaffed and both teachers and parents struggling to keep kids on track. If that’s not enough, you can always cut music, arts, language, and sports programs, and just teach kids to do nothing but pass standardized tests. We can cut down on custodians too – who cares if our schools are dirty and dangerous?
Now that’s real leadership! People love the new hold music as they wait for one of the few 911 dispatchers left to answer their call. They have more time to consider life’s tough questions as they wait even longer for an ambulance, fire services, or the police to arrive and respond to their emergencies.
Decisive action! There’s no need to inspect all bridges regularly – I’m sure those they’ll be just fine! And there’s nothing people love more than driving over streets filled with potholes. It’s like going off-roading, but on the road!
Brilliant move! If there’s one thing we’ve learned from the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s that public health is a great place to tighten our belts. Without cost-of-living increases or hazard pay, nurses at the public hospital are fleeing for better paying jobs. Now the ER is understaffed at exactly the moment it is overwhelmed and overcrowded.
You show great wisdom! Those hardest hit by the economic crash are the same folks who rely on public transportation to get to work (or to try to find a new job after being laid off). And they get to compete with laid-off bus drivers, subway operators, and other transportation system employees who are looking for work!
We can avoid making these impossible choices if we act now. Write to Congress today and demand they fund the front lines and help state and local governments avoid devastating cuts to services.
Cut Public schools
WHAT HAPPENS IF WE DON’T