Allegheny County officials, workers to Senator Toomey: End the Government Shutdown Now


Jodi Hirsh,

Pittsburgh United, Casa San Jose, SEIU 32BJ, Just Harvest, Tuesdays With Toomey and community members will protest Sen. Toomey’s downtown office on Tuesday to demand he work toward ending the government shutdown.

Pittsburgh, PA—Today, organizations and community members from across the county will join a protest at Senator Toomey’s downtown office where they will call upon him to speak out to end this shutdown.

Thanks to Senator McConnell and Donald Trump’s insistence that we build a racist wall, millions of Pennsylvanians are suffering every single day from this shutdown. Critical anti-hunger and anti-poverty benefits are either already suspended or will be soon. Travel is less safe. Food is less safe. Public health is less safe. The environment is less safe.

Stephanie Fello is a mother who works full time at a grocery store for such low wages that WIC is absolutely necessary for her to be able to regularly buy nutritious food for her baby at that same grocery store. “So many hard-working people like me and other low-wage workers rely on benefits like WIC and SNAP not only to meet our own most basic needs but to care for family members who cannot work:  infants, seniors, people with disabilities or chronic illnesses.” So many of Stephanie’s customers also rely on SNAP – cutting off those benefits will affect both grocery stores and millions of their customers.

Stephanie says, “It is utterly wrong for Trump to threaten me and my child with hunger to get his way.”

Said PA House Representative Sara Innamarato, “We live in a world where unions are under attack, inequality is widening. Our families are increasingly living paycheck to paycheck. The corporate elite are taking more and paying less. This wall is about Donald Trump capitalizing on our economic instability to fan the flames of hatred and fear. It is a symbol of hate and prejudice, a monument to white supremacy, and another attempt to systematically dismantle democracy. The wall is about denying Americans a voice.  This is the kind of petty tyranny the President prefers: making demands and shutting down the government to get his way. The voices that elected a Democratic House in November are being silenced by this authoritarian action. The voices that demanded change are being shut down and shut out.”

The border wall is a blatant misuse of resources that could instead be used to support public transit, schools, healthy food, housing, public health, and clean air and water. It’s destructive to American values. It is not a practical or just solution to border security and inadequately addresses our immigration challenges, including a needed path to citizenship. It’s not a 21st-century response–the immigration challenges we face are numerous and complex and must be dealt with thoughtfully, humanely, and democratically, not at gunpoint.

WHAT: Tell Senator Toomey: End the Government Shutdown!
WHO: State Senator Jay Costa

State Representatives Ed Gainey, Sara Innamorato, Summer Lee, and Jake Wheatley

Verna Johnson, low-income worker who relies on Section 8 housing voucher program

Stephanie Fello, grocery store worker, mother of infant,  WIC recipient

Alandia Heard, personal care attendant to seniors and people with disabilities receiving SNAP

Monica Ruiz, Casa San Jose

Brandi Fisher, Pittsburgh United

Sam Williamson, SEIU 32BJ

WHEN: Tuesday, January 22, 2019, 12 PM
WHERE: Outside Senator Toomey’s office, 310 Grant St, Pittsburgh, PA 15219-2202


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