May 13, 2020

Young Honors Hoosiers Fighting the Coronavirus Pandemic in Floor Speech

floor speech

Click here or on the image above for Senator Young’s full remarks.

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.) delivered remarks on the Senate floor highlighting the many Hoosiers who have stepped up to fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

“Congress I know is sending every necessary support to workers and employers and much needed supplies to medical professionals and to hospitals. We are also removing red tape to help our economy withstand this virus and speed medical innovations to treat and eventually cure it. But though our government, a government ‘of the people’, is sending relief and will continue to do so, it’s really our citizens who are leading the fight outside of government. We are showing a spirit that is uniquely Hoosier and I dare say, uniquely American.

“Across my great state there are countless acts of courage and compassion, Hoosiers leaving groceries on a neighbor’s doorstep, or printing off 3-D face masks, even something as simple as calling an old friend – maybe they live on their own and just need a word, a word so they won’t feel lonely,” said Senator Young during his floor speech.

Remarks as Prepared for Delivery:

We are passing through a painful period, one we never imagined we’d live through, one we will never forget.

It’s not only the infected that this pandemic has hurt, the coronavirus is robbing so many Americans of their ability to earn a living, it’s taking away businesses they worked for decades to build.

New anxieties are everywhere - routines are upended. Our children are wondering when they will see their friends again, and why their graduations were canceled. It’s difficult not to feel hopeless or afraid.

Congress is sending every necessary support to workers and employers – and much needed supplies to medical professionals and hospitals. We are also removing red tape to help our economy withstand this virus and speed medical innovations to treat and eventually cure it. But though our government – a government “of the people” – is sending relief and will continue to do so - it’s our citizens who are leading the fight outside of government.

We are showing a spirit that is uniquely American – and Hoosier. Together, we are doing our parts and together we will pass through this. We see this spirit in the incredible heroism of our healthcare workers and care givers. They have been asked to bear the greatest burden – and they have answered. In doing this they are sacrificing their own safety and coming to the rescue where medicine cannot. We’ve seen it too in the bravery from those in what we have deemed our essential industries. They were essential long before this crisis – but it took this crisis to make that clear. And we have seen it in the actions of rank and file Hoosiers. 

Across Indiana there are countless acts of courage and compassion, Hoosiers leaving groceries on a neighbor’s doorstep, printing off 3-D face masks, even something as simple as making purchases to help keep a local business going.

In Floyd County, Indiana, a florist dropped off azaleas at homes around the area. The accompanying notes read: “During this time of darkness, we hope to bring you a little light.” These “little lights” are glowing across our state in this otherwise dark time.

Marines are taught to confront problems with creative thinking, to adapt, improvise, and overcome. Similarly, when Hoosiers face tough situations, they roll up their sleeves and ask “how can I help?”  

When Americans combine our innovative spirit with service to others we can meet any moment. Including the one we are now in.

I’ve spoken to more than 22,000 Hoosiers over the last several weeks, and I have been moved by their stories of compassion and generosity.

I heard from Maria with Sewing the Seed, which began as a ministry, but has grown into a massive community project in Vincennes. They are sewing masks for nursing homes, elderly people, immuno-compromised, and others during this time.

Twila with Sure Clean Inc. told me about their efforts to sanitize over 4,000 masks.

Willie from Jennings County is helping out his fellow veterans by delivering food, mowing grass, and doing wellness checks.

Sean and Ben with Olio – a startup in Indiana – are helping hospitals in Indiana coordinate patient care and reduce further spread of the virus.

Darrell with LifeLine Youth Ministries is making food boxes for kids in Elkhart, and has provided hundreds of meals.

I also spoke with Crossroads Distillery, Huber’s Starlight Distillery, and French Lick Winery who are producing and distributing hand sanitizer.

The list of those who are asking how they can help, and finding innovative ways to do so, is too long to recite here. The fight against coronavirus has catalyzed our American can-do spirit.  Problem solvers are taking the initiative and to them we say “thank you.”

Let us move forward intent that we, and future generations, might draw energy from this moment — forever and let us resolve to find new ways to be better citizens by using our God-given talents to serve others.

The days ahead will not be easy. But we will endure them. These clouds will part and when they do, we will care for those who have been hurt and we will rebuild what we’ve lost with the same spirit with which we are now fighting this virus.