April 16, 2021

Duckworth Joins Coons, Wicker, Colleagues in Reintroducing Bill to Expand National Service to Bolster COVID-19 Recovery


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) joined U.S. Senators Chris Coons (D-DE), Roger Wicker (R-MS) and 15 bipartisan colleagues in reintroducing the Cultivating Opportunity and Recovery to the Pandemic through Service (CORPS) Act, which would expand national service programs significantly to help the country recover and rebuild from COVID-19. The CORPS Act would increase the number of AmeriCorps positions available to support a variety of response and recovery efforts based on community needs, including expanding food bank capacity, mentoring and tutoring students recovering from learning loss, helping to improve housing and more.

“Just as picking up a rifle to defend our country is ‘American Service,’ so is helping out a food pantry for those at risk of hunger, assisting students with remote education and helping patients make critical health care decisions as we work to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic,” Duckworth said. “We should be doing everything we can to make sure vital service programs like AmeriCorps are accessible to all Americans—especially those who come from underserved communities or have had contact with the juvenile justice system—who wish to serve and help the country they love build back better. That’s why I’m proud to help Senator Coons and Senator Wicker introduce this bipartisan proposal—which builds on my 21st Century American Service Act—and I look forward to sending it to the President’s desk.”

“The past year has shown us that America can overcome any challenge so long as we do so together – when we look out for our neighbors, give back to our communities, and unite behind a common purpose,” Coons said. “We still have work to do to end this pandemic, rebuild, and recover, and one of the best ways we can do that is by investing in our strengths – in the thousands of young people who are eager to roll up their sleeves and serve their country, and in our locally-driven national service network that is already on the ground meeting urgent needs in our communities. I’m proud to introduce the CORPS Act with Senator Wicker and this impressive group of colleagues, and look forward to passing it into law so we can build back stronger than ever.”

“Our nation’s full recovery from the pandemic will require an all-hands approach,” Wicker said. “Boosting the ranks of our service corps is a cost-efficient way to get communities the help they need. I am glad to join Senator Coons in reintroducing the CORPS Act, which would expand national service opportunities at a crucial time for our nation. The COVID-19 outbreak has presented many challenges for our nation, and national service can help us emerge even stronger from this crisis.”

In addition to Duckworth, Coons and Wicker, the bill was cosponsored by U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-RI), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Susan Collins (R-ME), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Marco Rubio (R-FL), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Angus King (I-ME), John Cornyn (R-TX), Mark Kelly (D-AZ), Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Dick Durbin (D-IL).

For a one-pager on the bill, please click here.