Saturday, September 24, 2022


The health-care subsidy extension a relief for small businesses; Consumer groups press for a bill to reform credit reporting; and an international group aims to transform how people view peace and conflict.


Condemnation of Russian war on Ukraine continues at the U.N, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says there's need for worker training to rebuild Puerto Rico, the House takes on record corporate profits while consumers struggle with inflation.


The Old Farmer's Almanac predicts two winters across the U.S., the Inflation Reduction Act could level the playing field for rural electric co-ops, and pharmacies are dwindling in rural America.

ND Groups Push Congress to Move Faster on Pandemic Relief Bill


Monday, August 3, 2020   

BISMARCK, N.D. - As COVID-19 cases continue to spike in North Dakota, social service support groups are asking the U.S. Senate to act quickly before its August recess and approve more emergency assistance.

Many North Dakotans are on the brink of hunger and homelessness because of COVID-19-related shutdowns, according to Cheryl Ann Kary - executive director of the Sacred Pipe Resource Center, which provides services to Native American families in the Bismarck area.

She said many of the people her group assists are in the service and retail industries, and need extended unemployment benefits, rental assistance and health care to survive.

"We have people who are no longer able to keep their heads above water," said Kary. "They're sinking. And I think that just, with a little more assistance, we can help people, you know, at least keep afloat."

Unemployment in North Dakota was just over 9% in April and just over 6% in June. That's almost triple what it was in June 2019, at 2.4%.

Kary said the need seems more critical among Native Americans who don't live on reservations, as the reservations received some CARES Act funding this year. She said those living in urban areas are more likely to have seen job losses and evictions.

"Of course, we still have a lot of racial tensions here, remaining from the Dakota Access Pipeline protests," said Kary. "And I think that definitely plays into the choices - whether someone gets evicted, or whether someone gets hired or not."

Deborah Weinstein, executive director of the nonprofit Coalition on Human Needs, said Congress needs to move fast now that federal unemployment benefits have run out, and before the extended eviction moratorium ends in October.

"We have not experienced anything like this for 100 years," said Weinstein. "We've got a stubborn disease that is keeping our economy from functioning the way it should. We cannot let our families suffer in this way. The consequences to children are so grave."

She also urged lawmakers to approve an additional $1 trillion in aid to state and local governments to avoid funding cuts to critical health, education and social service programs.

Disclosure: Coalition on Human Needs contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy & Priorities, Census, Children's Issues, Poverty Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.

get more stories like this via email
Nonprofit organizations employed nearly 30,000 Montanans in 2019. (Artur/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

The work of some nonprofit organizations has only increased with the pandemic and the needs that have come from it. An author and expert in the field …

Social Issues

Hispanic Heritage Month began in mid-September and runs through Oct. 15, and a financial institution in Washington state is finding unique ways to …


Conservation groups say more needs to be done to protect the natural and cultural resources of Utah's Labyrinth Canyon from off-road vehicles…

Social Issues

Consumer groups are pressing for legislation to reform the way credit agencies handle errors on credit reports. The calls to amend the Fair Credit …

The Biden administration is working on new nationwide regulations for methane gas emissions from oil and gas sites. (Leonid Ikan/Adobe Stock)


A relatively small number of so-called "super emitters" are responsible for 40% of the methane emissions in oil and gas hotspots such as California's …

Social Issues

As "Banned Books Week" comes to a close, Connecticut libraries have been celebrating with great fervor - despite numerous book bans and challenges…

Social Issues

Average Affordable Care Act premiums in Wisconsin would have been 56% higher this year without temporary subsidies from the federal government…


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021