Boston (April 16, 2020) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), a member of the Senate Small Business Committee, released the following statement on the urgent need for immediate, additional funding for disaster assistance for small businesses, state and local governments, and hospitals and health care centers. Massachusetts is home to approximately 669,000 small businesses alone. Senator Markey has a resource page on his website for small businesses looking to access economic relief through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.


“I’ve held numerous conference calls with hundreds of small businesses across Massachusetts that tell me that they’ve been in business for decades but it could all end in a matter of weeks without more economic relief,” said Senator Markey. “Congress must ensure that small businesses get the money that they and their workers desperately need.


“But at this time I’m hearing especially from women and minority-owned businesses that they are not getting the same access to relief as others. We cannot afford to allow a system of inequality to perpetuate itself over and over again. We need to make sure this interim relief package provides relief to those who need it most, not just those with the best connections. There must be fixes to make sure the Paycheck Protection Program works better for the truly small businesses that it was designed for, including businesses in our underserved communities that are the strength of our local economies.


“But I am also hearing from local elected leaders that say if they don’t get help now from the federal government, they are going to have to start laying off teachers. We cannot allow this to happen. Nor can we leave our hospitals, community health centers, and other health facilities that are doing God’s work right now to go bankrupt. That’s why the Democrats interim relief package proposal also includes $150 billion to help state and local governments, as well as $100 billion for health officials get the medical equipment and resources they need to test and treat individuals suffering from the coronavirus.


“If the Trump administration and Leader Mitch McConnell are serious about delivering more resources for small businesses, they must put partisanship aside and work together to provide all the urgent funding we agree America needs right now.”