VIDEO RELEASE: Shaheen Addresses Granite State Families on the Coronavirus Public Health EmergencyMarch 17, 2020
Senator Shaheen addressing Granite State families during her video message
(Washington, DC) – Today in a video message, U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) addressed New Hampshire families on the coronavirus public health emergency. In her remarks, Shaheen urged Granite Staters to adhere to the guidance from public health officials, provided an update on her bipartisan efforts in the Senate to secure relief for impacted working families and small businesses.
The following is a transcript of Shaheen’s remarks. The video address can be viewed in full here.
Hi, I’m Jeanne Shaheen. Concern about the coronavirus, or COVID-19, is top of mind for Granite Staters. I know this is a very stressful time for many of you and that there’s a tremendous amount of uncertainty. I hope everyone can remain calm, and continue to take all necessary precautions to protect yourself and those around you.
This is one of those times in history when all Americans need to unite and do what’s best for our communities and our country. All of us have an important role to play in mitigating the spread of this virus. This illness is very serious. Seniors and those with underlying medical conditions are especially at risk.
So I urge everyone to practice social distancing, which means you should avoid hugs, handshakes, large gatherings of people and maintain a distance from others in public. And remember: continue to wash your hands often. Please take all official guidance very seriously. And I encourage everyone to check-in regularly with the State Department if you’re thinking about any international travel.
If you think you’ve been exposed, seek medical care. But be sure to call ahead before visiting your hospital or doctor’s office. Even if you haven’t shown symptoms, you may be carrying the virus and infecting people around you – this is why social distancing is so critical. You may be able to withstand the virus, but others around you could be vulnerable.
New Hampshire has established a hotline for questions about COVID-19. That hotline can be reached by dialing 2-1-1 or 1-866-444-4211. Again, that hotline can be reached by dialing 2-1-1 or 1-866-444-4211. If you suspect that you are exhibiting symptoms, call the hotline to get answers about next steps.
Congress is working on sweeping legislation to help working families. The legislation provides emergency paid sick leave to many workers and unemployment insurance for those laid off. It also strengthens the ability of school lunch programs, food banks and other nutrition assistance programs to help seniors and families in need.
This is an important step, but Congress needs to do more, including additional support for the economy, small businesses, non-profits and social service organizations.
In the days ahead, I will be fighting for further legislation to help New Hampshire small businesses stay afloat and to keep workers safe and financially secure.
We must do everything in our power to ensure our economy remains resilient and families can afford to protect themselves without worrying about their financial wellbeing.
These are challenging times. The health of Granite Staters and the American people is my top priority. At every level of government, we need to work together in a bipartisan way.
I’ll continue to share updates with you as they become available.
In the meantime, I encourage you to listen to all health officials and take the steps necessary to stay safe. This is the best way to look out for your neighbors and your loved ones and yourself. And remember that we will meet this challenge together.
Senator Shaheen and the New Hampshire congressional delegation have been sounding the alarm on the need for additional federal funding to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. Following calls from Shaheen and others in Congress, on Friday President Trump declared a national emergency in response to the spread of coronavirus. Shaheen has called for the Senate to swiftly pass the bipartisan economic coronavirus response legislation that passed the House last Friday. Shaheen supported bipartisan government funding legislation to help states’ response efforts, which was recently signed into law. Last week, the CDC disbursed the $4.9 million funds for New Hampshire included in that funding package.
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