Share the Relief

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Well, it looks like I will probably be receiving one of those stimulus checks. Me, my spouse, my child — we will be eligible for relief.

But as difficult as it is being two working parents with a kid stuck at home, we are not the ones who are hurting the most — so we’re giving the money away. Will you join us?

It’s hard. Like most of you, I’ve already started spending that money in my mind. I’ve got student loans to pay, a steep mortgage (did I mention termites?), a list of other needs and wants…but me and my spouse still have steady work. Our income is reliable. We aren’t flush, but we’re not broke.

However, many others in our town are struggling just to put food on the table.

So we’re going to do the right thing and put that money where it is most needed. It’s not free cash — it’s a relief check. Let’s use it for that.

I’m going to give my check to the 805Undocufund — our undocumented neighbors who have lost their jobs won’t be getting any money from the federal government. So the least we can do is pass along the relief. I know the 805Undocufund, established after the Thomas Fire and Debris Flow, has a track record of excellent emergency response. I know they will get the money to people who need it more than I do.

If you are in a position to help a neighbor, now is the time. We are all doing our part to slow this pandemic by staying home. Let us also do our part by distributing the economic relief where it is most needed. It’s the right thing to do.

Rev. Julia Hamilton is lead minister of the Unitarian Society of Santa Barbara.

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