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To: President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence

Frontline healthcare workers are doing everything they can to keep patients, communities and themselves alive during this crisis. But too many don’t have the personal protective equipment (PPE), the medical equipment, or the tests they need. This administration must immediately  invoke the Defense Production Act to manufacture much needed equipment, and release PPE from the Strategic Defense Stockpile. Essential workers lives’ are on the line! #GetMePPE


My name is Zaida, a 1199SEIU member and a home health aide based in New York City, now the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a home healthcare worker and a mother, I find myself as a caretaker on both ends of this healthcare crisis, often without the personal protective equipment (PPE) to keep my patients, myself, and my family safe. 


Each day, I tend to patients with chronic illnesses in their own homes, many of whom are elderly and the most vulnerable during this health crisis. I also care for my 14 year old son with asthma, who is forced to stay indoors in fear of how this virus could affect his respiratory system. Because I don’t have access to the basic necessities like protective gloves and masks, I’m forced to choose between my patients’ health and my son’s health each time I leave the house. For now, I make do as best as I can, washing my hands religiously, and holding on to the diminishing supply of gloves and masks that I’ve purchased out of pocket. 


This doesn’t have to be our reality. We are in a health crisis in this country and we need to take urgent action. Shortages put our patients and our caretakers at undue risk to become infected with this virus. To keep healthcare workers like me safe, we need the federal government to step in quickly and do the following:


  • Invoke the Defense Production Act in a comprehensive and systematic way

  • Release immediately PPEs and Medical equipment in the Strategic Defense Stockpile

  • Release and reallocate stockpiles from other industries to the healthcare industry


The sooner we act, the more lives we save. 

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