U.S. Sen. Tom Udall
U.S. SENATE News:
SANTA FE — U.S. Sen. Tom Udall, vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, released the following statement Friday after the Indian Health Service (IHS) announced it is distributing $600 million of the $1.032 billion appropriated by Congress for the IHS in the recently passed CARES Act, the emergency COVID-19 legislative package enacted last week.
Earlier this week, Udall led a bicameral, bipartisan group of lawmakers in writing to the president urging him to get CARES Act Tribal resources into the hands of those that need them.
“Following my call for swift action, I am relieved that the Indian Health Service is moving quickly to distribute the critical funding we secured in the CARES Act. We must ensure these life-saving resources quickly get to the field for Tribes, Indian Health Service facilities, and urban Indian health organizations. Tribes have been very clear that COVID-19 will be devastating for their communities if they do not get the necessary public health resources. That is why I fought hard to significantly increase funding for IHS in the CARES Act negotiations, nearly doubling what the administration initially proposed,” Udall said. “But this funding is only useful when it actually gets on the ground in the communities that need it, so today’s announcement is a very positive step forward. My staff and I are working around the clock to conduct oversight over the distribution of these resources, pushing the administration to swiftly and effectively distribute this funding in a manner that respects tribal sovereignty and self-determination. I will continue to fight in Congress to provide the necessary resources and policies for Tribes and all Native communities to face down this pandemic and protect their communities.”
For more information on the Tribal provisions of the CARES Act Udall fought for, click HERE.