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Leader Sykes: Ohioans need economic relief now, legislature needs to act

Urges swift passage of legislative measures to aid workers and small businesses
March 16, 2020
Emilia Strong Sykes News

COLUMBUS—House Democratic Leader Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron) today echoes the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus’s call on Speaker of the House Larry Householder and Senate President Larry Obhof to convene the Ohio General Assembly as quickly as possible.

With a background in public health, Leader Sykes says she understands and appreciates the decisions the governor and Dr. Amy Acton are making as being the right ones. But says there is another crisis in Ohio —the economic crisis – that requires immediate legislative action.

She released the following statement:

“I agree with the governor’s decision today to close restaurants and bars to sit-in patrons at this stage of the pandemic. However, I do also recognize the negative impact this is going to have on our small business owners, their staff and Ohio families. I applaud the governor for following the recommendations of our caucus to expand unemployment benefits to those negatively affected the most, but more is going to have to be done to address the economic crisis that this public health crisis has created beyond unemployment compensation.

We have seen by repeated missed deadlines for three of our four budgets this General Assembly that Ohio’s legislative body does not always move quickly when it matters most. This cannot be another time where we delay action.

My Democratic colleagues and I stand ready to return to the statehouse to pass the necessary legislation to bring relief to all hard-working Ohioans as soon as possible.”  

Leader Sykes holds a Master’s of Public Health from the College of Public Health and Health Profession at the University of Florida.

Leader Sykes: Ohioans need economic relief now, legislature needs to act (PDF)