Senator Ed Markey, Gloucester Mayor Sefatia Romeo Theken, and Executive Director of Gloucester Fisheries Commission Al Cottone Discuss $28 Million in Support Funds for Massachusetts Fisheries
Wednesday, May 20, 2020
MALDEN — Senator Ed Markey Tuesday hosted a livestream event with Gloucester Mayor Sefatio Romeo Theken and ground fisherman and Executive Director of the Gloucester Fisheries Commission, Al Cottone. The trio met to discuss the unique challenges faced by the Gloucester community during the COVID-19 pandemic and the Senator’s efforts to secure $28 million in special relief funding for the local fishing industry.
The discussion included the continued need to support local fisheries and the seafood industry and an update on Senator Markey’s work to ensure that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) bought $20 million of Atlantic pollock, haddock, and redfish for its Section 32 program.
Senator Markey said he remains committed to ensuring that testing, funding, and other support remains in place for Massachusetts’ fishermen, fisheries, and processing plants.
“We need more testing, we don’t have enough. We need more contact tracing, we don’t have enough. We need more personal protective equipment, we don’t have enough,” said Senator Markey. “And we have to keep providing these resources to the private sector so that people feel safe. A lot of this is consumer confidence so that people will go back to restaurants, so that people will go back to work.”
Senator Markey has been at the forefront in Congress calling for protections for frontline workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. He was one of the first to call for President Trump to invoke the Defense Protection Act to dramatically ramp up production and distribution of personal protective equipment (PPE) like masks, gloves, gowns, and other medical equipment. Senator Markey and Senate colleagues secured $300 million in relief funding to help fishermen in Massachusetts and across the country.
Liz Vlock, Press Secretary