Cannot return to normal after COVID-19, nation must revert to stronger

Contact: Shin Inouye, [email protected], 202.869.0398

WASHINGTON – A united civil rights community urged Congress to ensure that our nation emerges after the COVID-19 pandemic as a more equitable, healthy, and just society. In the first comprehensive letter to lawmakers on the COVID-19 crisis from The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, leading activists noted the spotlight that COVID-19 is shining on America’s longstanding institutional racism and systemic inequality. To build a stronger America, members of Congress must craft laws to protect public health more effectively, preserve and strengthen our public institutions, and ensure that our eventual economic recovery works for everyone.

“Through health and education disparities, income inequality, discrimination in voting and housing, unequal treatment within the legal system, and the digital divide, communities of color have been routinely locked out and left behind — and sadly, as we have seen in increased hate violence, and in far worse health outcomes for people of color, this pandemic is no different,” wrote Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference. “Our nation faces tremendous uncertainty due to a public health crisis that we are still struggling to fully understand, but we will ultimately get through this if we pull together and do what is best for everyone. The future is what we must create together. We have to unite across our differences and reimagine what our commitment truly is to one another. It is profoundly important that the eventual recovery works for everyone, and that Congress adopts policies that leave us in a better place.”

The letter included the following areas as a roadmap of our key priorities:

 The letter can be read in its entirety here.

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights is a coalition charged by its diverse membership of more than 220 national organizations to promote and protect the rights of all persons in the United States. The Leadership Conference works toward an America as good as its ideals. For more information on The Leadership Conference and its member organizations, visit