Week Ending January 22, 2021

A New President, A New Congress, A New Agenda

What to expect in the initial 100 days of our nation’s new leadership and what AFSCME needs from you to ensure that workers’ needs remain at the top of the agenda.

  • Welcome President Joe Biden and the New 117th Congress: Expectations for the next 100 Days
  • The Next Round of COVID Aid: Call your Reps Today
  • Roundup on the FY 2021 Omnibus Funding and Taxes

Welcome to the President, Vice-President and 117th Congress

Just a few days into office, we can already see the difference a union-friendly president makes. On Day One, President Joe Biden issued executive orders to jumpstart an aggressive COVID plan, including an emergency OSHA standard to protect workers and increase vaccine and protective equipment production by using the Defense Production Act. He also issued executive orders to reverse the previous administration’s attacks on the collective bargaining rights of federal employees.

The margins in the House and the Senate are very tight, creating challenges to advance the next COVID relief package and AFSCME’s priorities to provide quality public services, a voice on the job and in our democracy, health care, and retirement security for all. In the most recent election, we saw how every vote counts. The same is true in Congress. Moderates in both parties will be key votes, and we will need our friends to stick with us and to cultivate new friends and even stronger commitments. The Green Machine’s full support from members to affiliates will be key.

Democrats hold just a 12-seat advantage in the House, and the Senate is split 50/50 with the seating of Georgia’s new Democratic senators, Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff. Vice President Kamala Harris will preside as president of the Senate, providing the tie-breaking vote in favor of the Democrats.

The Senate is already reviewing Cabinet nominations for the Biden administration.  AFSCME strongly supports Mayor Marty Walsh for secretary of Labor, Xavier Becerra for secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio) for secretary of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and Neera Tanden to direct the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). The Senate will also proceed soon with the impeachment trial for former President Donald Trump. There’s a lot pending, and we will need your help to ensure that workers’ needs remain at the top of the agenda.

The Next Round of COVID Aid

Biden’s new American Rescue Plan includes over $600 billion in aid for states, counties, cities, towns, schools, public and community colleges, public transit, vaccine distribution and COVID testing. State and local aid can’t be left on the chopping block again. We need your help to make the Biden American Rescue Plan a reality.


1.4 million public employees lost their jobs since the start of this pandemic.

The December COVID aid package left out state and local aid.

Front-line public service workers like you are critical to fighting this pandemic and reopening our economy.

America can’t do either without you.

Call Your U.S. Representative: 1-888-981-9704 and say

“More state and local aid is urgently needed to beat this pandemic and get our economy back on track.”

Roundup on the FY 2021 Omnibus and FY 2022 Look Ahead – Funding and Taxes

The omnibus funding and relief bill passed in December provided significant funding for the public services AFSCME members provide and rely on for their own families. Details on relevant funding for the FY 2021 fiscal year is in this new fact sheet. Details on emergency funding and provisions included in the December 2020 COVID relief bill are available here.

The omnibus bill also included costly tax giveaways to the wealthy and profitable businesses that AFSCME strongly opposed, because they are unfair and deprive the federal government of needed revenue for essential services.



Email Blevin@afscme.org to share your affiliate's priorities and stories from AFSCME members funded by these federal programs.

The FY 2022 funding process has already begun, and AFSCME will share priorities with Congress soon. Is there a program or sector you want us to highlight? Please let us know.

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