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Building on over a year of efforts to arm business leaders with the tools and resources they need to protect their employees and recover from the pandemic, last week the U.S. Chamber of Commerce launched the Rally for Recovery Commitment, asking employers to commit to taking three important steps to get the country back to health and American workers back to work:
- Encourage mask wearing and social distancing in the workplace.
- Reduce barriers to employee vaccinations.
- Communicate with your customers and communities about how to stop the spread of the virus.
The Rally for Recovery Commitment encourages every company and organization to continue to do their part to help protect employees, customers and communities, so that together we can reignite the economy and defeat the pandemic.
Educating businesses and the public
Since the start of the pandemic, the U.S. Chamber and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation have been at the forefront of providing accurate and data-driven guidance to American businesses and communities.
The Rally for Recovery Commitment is just the latest in a series of resources available to American workers and business from the U.S. Chamber, including information to help small businesses access financial support, resources to help all companies navigate the reopening process, and a comprehensive COVID-19 Vaccines Digital Resource Center to help business leaders and associations navigate vaccine questions.
“I can’t put into words how grateful I am for the U.S. Chamber, for the access to helpful information through zoom calls, guest speakers, the open discourse in question-and-answer sessions, and for the overall resources provided. Specifically, we have used all of the print materials and online resources the U.S. Chamber provided. We’re all going 150 mph and it’s refreshing to know that we’re not fighting alone. This is why we are members and pay dues. The Chamber can help fight on our behalf,” said Small Business Council member Karen Olson Beenken, CEO, Blue Rock Companies.
The Chamber’s COVID-related resources, guides, and other content have been viewed and downloaded more than 15 million times. The Chamber Foundation has hosted nearly 30 Path Forward events on some of the pandemic’s most pressing questions, with more than 25 million views.
Pushing for legislative relief
Over the past year, the Chamber has led the business community in pressing Congress for passage of five bipartisan COVID-relief bills, which delivered critical relief and support for people, families, communities, and businesses hard hit by the virus.
That legislation included the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) which alone has approved over seven million loans (with an average loan size of around $73,000) to help small businesses meet payroll, pay utilities and rent, and pay other costs of operation.
To help small businesses navigate how to secure PPP loans and find other critical resources, the Chamber created the Save Small Business Initiative, including a compiled list of financial assistance programs, resources, and advice to help small businesses through the pandemic—and advocated for many of the federal relief programs listed there.
The Chamber’s small business content hub, CO— by U.S. Chamber of Commerce, launched a Coronavirus Small Business Resource Guide and hosted dozens of webinars and events to help small businesses apply for PPP funding, pivot their business, navigate new safety protocols, and recover from the pandemic.
“The U.S. Chamber is possibly the best curator of information in the business world in general, but especially related to this crisis,” said U.S. Chamber Small Business Council Chair Ian MacLean of Highland Landscaping LLC, based in Southlake, Texas. “Keep up the great work, keep fighting every angle for small businesses, and may God bless and protect you all!”
In a time of need, the business community steps up
The Chamber hasn’t been alone in this fight. Throughout the health and economic crises arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, companies of every size and industry have been stepping up in extraordinary ways.
The U.S. Chamber and U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation have told the stories of how companies are manufacturing PPE and ventilators, developing treatments and vaccines, pivoting their operations to help overcome the virus, and going above and beyond to support their employees, customers, and local communities.
American companies have been at the center of the response to the coronavirus whether it be by donating time or money, working to develop treatments or vaccines, or helping out in their communities.
For example, despite being in a sector that was heavily impacted by pandemic-related shutdowns, Delta Air Lines donated more than 200,000 pounds of food to hospitals, community food banks and other organizations to support people in need and frontline workers. In October of last year, Gilead’s medicine, Veklury, became the first FDA-approved treatment for COVID-19 in the United States.
In March of 2020, employees at InclusivCare scrapped the public grand opening of a new pharmacy and instead hosted a drive-in COVID-19 Outreach Event to help educate their New Orleans community about how the virus spread. Building Momentum, a local small business based in Alexandria, Virginia, made ready-to-build desks so that any child in the community who wanted one could have a designated space for virtual schoolwork.
How Your Business Can Join the Rally for Recovery Commitment
Our nation’s business community continues to play a critical role in combatting the pandemic. Now that safe and effective vaccines are available, businesses of every size and industry must rally around the common goal of defeating the virus.
Join employers across the nation helping to protect workers and defeat the pandemic.