CNA Staff, Oct 1, 2020 / 08:30 am America/Denver (CNA).
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has condemned a proposed COVID-19 relief bill that excludes support for children and families enrolled in non-public schools.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has affected all Americans, including those whose children are enrolled in Catholic and non-public schools,” said Bishop Michael Barber, SJ of Oakland in a statement released on Thursday, October 1. Barber leads the USCCB’s Committee on Catholic Education.
“It is unconscionable that this latest aid proposal would exclude these American children and the schools they attend from emergency aid that would ease the financial burdens they have borne as a result of the pandemic,” said Barber.
The bill, the Health and Economic Recovery Omnibus Emergency Solutions (HEROES) Act, would provide $182 billion for K-12 public schools, but no equivalent services for non-public schools. This version of the HEROES Act was proposed by the House Democrats and may be heard as soon as Thursday, said the USCCB.
Additionally, the bill prohibits the use of funds to assist families who have children enrolled in non-public schools.