Parsippany, NJ -- Representative Mikie Sherrill (NJ-11) and eight members of the House freshman class with national security backgrounds introduced a resolution to formally honor frontline workers responding to COVID-19, recognizing the parallels between their selfless service during this crisis and those who have traditionally been on the frontlines of America’s defense. Representatives Elissa Slotkin (MI-08), Jason Crow (CO-06), Gil Cisneros (CA-39), Chrissy Houlahan (PA-06), Abigail Spanberger (VA-07), Elaine Luria (VA-02), Max Rose (NY-11), and Jared Golden (ME-02) introduced the resolution with Representative Sherrill.
The nine Members of Congress –– all of whom served in the military or in the nation’s defense and intelligence agencies –– introduced the resolution to recognize the significance of frontline workers’ service, as they put themselves in harm’s way to perform the variety of essential tasks necessary to keep Americans safe during this pandemic.
“Our state is in the worst public health crisis we’ve experienced in a century. And yet every day, thousands of New Jerseyans get up and go to work to perform essential services,” said Representative Sherrill. “We owe an immense debt of gratitude to the selfless people who are holding our community together in these tough times: medical workers, grocery store clerks, sanitation workers, bus drivers, and so many others. We are truly seeing the best of America reflected in these heroes.”
The resolution honors doctors, nurses, home care and domestic workers, and other medical professionals; firefighters, EMTs, paramedics, emergency dispatchers, Customs and Border Protection Officers, border patrol agents, security guards, corrections officers, and law enforcement officers; farmers, farm workers, fast food workers, restaurant workers, food processing workers, and grocery store employees; communication workers; truck drivers, commercial pilots, and food and supply distribution center workers; United States Postal Service employees and other carriers; sanitation, custodial, janitorial, and cleaning service workers; construction workers, electrical workers, steelworkers, carpenters, millwrights, utility workers, machinists, ironworkers, and other laborers; local, state, and federal employees; childcare workers; Transportation Security Administration officers, pilots, air traffic control officers, flight attendants, railroad workers, and transit workers; and other frontline workers who have continued to perform critical and essential missions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Our nation is at war, and these are our frontline troops, defending us against a deadly virus, keeping supply lines open, maintaining lines of communication –– and risking their lives every day to do so,” said Representative Slotkin. “Our frontline workers are answering the call to serve our country every day in the fight against COVID-19. During this generational moment, it’s important for Congress to go on the record to recognize exactly what their sacrifice means, and thank them for putting their health and safety on the line to serve the nation.”
“Those of us who have deployed are used to being recognized for our service, but in this moment, in this battle, ‘women and men in uniform’ means those wearing lab coats, or scrubs, or server’s aprons, or hard hats, not just military fatigues,” said Representative Rose. “The work they do is heroic and deserving of our utmost appreciation, not just during this crisis, but every single day. The proudest moment of my deployment with the National Guard was when my fellow soldiers and I got to stand and applaud the doctors and nurses leading us through this crisis, and I’m proud to join my colleagues in doing the same thing today in Congress.”
“Whether in a hospital, distribution center, or grocery store, Central Virginia’s frontline workers are putting their personal health on the line every day to keep our communities strong and safe,” said Representative Spanberger. “This resolution honors their selflessness, grit, and devotion to their fellow Americans. I’m proud to stand alongside my colleagues as we recognize those who’ve responded to this moment of national crisis with a movement of national courage.”
"COVID-19 is the public health and economic crisis of our generation," said Representative Crow. "The men and women on the frontlines of this pandemic are more than essential workers, they are our nation's heroes whose service and sacrifice has helped ensure the safety and health of millions of America."
“From the start of this crisis, our courageous frontline workers have been putting their lives on the line to keep our communities and country safe,” said Representative Cisneros. “I’m proud to join my national security freshmen colleagues to introduce this resolution honoring the selflessness and sacrifice of our frontline workers. Our country owes them a debt of gratitude. We must continue to fight for them as they have been fighting for us every single day.”
“The frontline workers who step up to serve our communities during this pandemic deserve our recognition and support,” said Representative Luria. “The personal sacrifice of these essential workers reminds us of the resiliency of our country and I am honored to join my freshman colleagues in honoring the work, sacrifice, and resolve of these frontline heroes.”
"To answer the call to serve this country is both a profound privilege and honorable responsibility,” said Representative Houlahan. “As a veteran, AmeriCorps member, and now Congresswoman, I want to thank the thousands of public servants across this nation who are putting their lives on the line for us – workers in health care, food service, grocery stores, post office, the National Guard, and more. It is in large part thanks to their courage that we will make it through this pandemic. I’m proud to introduce this resolution alongside my fellow servicemembers."
“For workers in frontline positions, showing up for their shift during this crisis means putting themselves in harm’s way,” said Representative Golden. “Still, thousands of these Mainers are getting up and going to work every day, making sacrifices and accepting risk in service to their communities. The very least we can do is honor them on the floor of the House of Representatives.”
Full text of the resolution is below:
Whereas COVID-19 is a generational event that has impacted every aspect of our country;
Whereas the fight against COVID-19 is America’s latest war, and our healthcare workers, food service workers, childcare workers, transportation workers and more are on the frontlines;
Whereas we have called on our frontline workers to serve their country during this pandemic;
Whereas frontline workers have answered this call and carried out their critical missions to protect the health and safety of our communities and to minimize the disruption that COVID-19 has caused to our daily lives;
Whereas doctors, nurses, home care and domestic workers, and other medical professionals have put themselves in harm’s way to care for their patients, COVID-19 or otherwise;
Whereas firefighters, EMTs, paramedics, emergency dispatchers, Customs and Border Protection Officers, border patrol agents, security guards, corrections officers, and law enforcement officers have continued to meet their existing responsibilities to maintain safety and public health while overcoming staggering new COVID-19 challenges;
Whereas farmers, farm workers, fast food workers, restaurant workers, food processing workers, and grocery store employees have ensured there is food available to put food on the table to feed our families during COVID-19;
Whereas communication workers have maintained networks that are stressed beyond their limits so that we are able to access the best information and stay as connected as possible through phone, cable, and internet, amidst physical isolation;
Whereas truck drivers, commercial pilots, and food and supply distribution center workers have maintained critical supply chains, supporting the production and distribution of medical supplies, personal protective equipment, medication, food, and more;
Whereas United States Postal Service employees and other carriers have maintained our nation’s delivery and communications network, connecting millions of homes, supporting economic activity, and delivering critical goods, including prescription medications;
Whereas sanitation, custodial, janitorial, and cleaning service workers have played a critical role in minimizing the spread of COVID-19, particularly in high-risk places that must remain open, including hospitals, airports, and grocery stores;
Whereas construction workers, electrical workers, steelworkers, carpenters, millwrights, utility workers, machinists, ironworkers, and other laborers have continued to work on infrastructure that must be constantly maintained;
Whereas local, state, and federal employees have upheld key government functions and services, which have become more important and more overwhelmed during COVID-19;
Whereas childcare workers have continued to care for the children of essential personnel, allowing these personnel to meet their obligations and continue their critical work during COVID-19;
Whereas Transportation Security Administration officers, pilots, air traffic control officers, flight attendants, railroad workers, and transit workers have ensured that we are able to travel safely and return from across the country and around the world to be home with our loved ones during this public health crisis; and
Whereas these workers, and other frontline workers, have continued to perform critical and essential missions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Now, therefore, be it resolved, That the U.S. House of Representatives –
- Recognizes and applauds the contributions of frontline workers during COVID-19
- Appreciates that frontline workers have answered the call to serve their country during these unprecedented times
- Commends the frontline workers who have risked their own health and safety, as well as the health and safety of their loved ones, to continue their work during the COVID-19 pandemic
- Understands that frontline workers have continued their work at times without complete protections they need to minimize their own risk of exposure to COVID-19.
- Recognizes that some frontline workers have been lost to COVID-19 as a result of their service, and offers their loved ones our sincerest condolences.
- Hails these acts of heroism that have allowed essential services to continue operating, minimized the inevitable disruption to Americans’ daily lives, and played a critical role in protecting the health and safety of our communities.
- Recognizes the immense debt of gratitude that we owe frontline workers for their heroic and selfless service during the COVID-19 pandemic, and thanks them.