CHICAGO (March 19, 2020)—Today, in response to the COVID-19 crisis that is crippling America, YMCA of the USA joined more than 100 leading nonprofit organizations in urging Congress to pass $60 billion in support for nonprofits and to pass key policy recommendations to support the efforts of nonprofits that are working on the ground to meet community needs. These leading nonprofits stressed to Congress the urgency of taking dramatic and immediate action to support the nonprofit sector, as the sector’s service is needed like never before.
Nonprofits like the Y are frontline responders providing food, shelter, medical services and other critical services to those in need in America’s communities. However, the current economic downturn will undoubtedly result in a reduction of contributions and other sources of revenue that are the lifeblood of nonprofit organizations.
“For nearly 170 years in our country, the YMCA has responded to the most pressing needs of our communities and the people who call them home,” said Kevin Washington, president and CEO of YMCA of the USA. “The COVID-19 pandemic presents unprecedented challenges to our organization and our service to communities. We are doing what we can right now, and we are committed to being here for communities as our country begins the tough work of recovery. However, like other nonprofit organizations, we will need significant support from the federal government to sustain our operations and care for our staff until that time comes. We can’t do this alone.”
America’s nonprofits are requesting an immediate infusion of $60 billion to maintain operations, expand scope to address increasing demands and stabilize losses from closures throughout the country. Nonprofits also are making a series of priority policy recommendations to Congress that are needed to help the nonprofit sector continue to serve the American people. They include:
- As 10 percent of U.S. GDP, nonprofits employ 12 million workers and YMCAs employ 260,000 staff. We need policies in place to retain them.
- Nonprofits need business continuity relief as we are on the frontlines serving people, especially those in need.
- Payroll tax credit relief will help nonprofit organizations, as it is the most significant tax we pay.
- An “above-the-line” or universal charitable deduction for contributions should be enacted at least through the end of 2021.
“Across the country, YMCAs are working quickly to provide critical services that communities need right now, such as child care for the children of health care workers and first responders and food programs for young people who no longer have access to school meals,” said Washington. “We need Congress to act now to sustain this vital work and assure the nation’s nonprofits will be in a strong position to support communities through recovery.”
Read the nonprofit coalition’s letter to Congress here.
Ask Congress to support nonprofits during this crisis here.