Ducey Offers Families and Schools Financial Incentives to Be Unsafe and Spread the Coronavirus

Members of the former Party of Lincoln really are living in an alternative reality where:

  • Lies are truth.
  • Believing in science is bad.
  • Personal freedom trumps public safety.
  • Spreading disease is good.

Today, the Governor of Arizona, Doug Ducey announced two financial incentive programs for families and schools that would incentivize denying scientific reality with regards to mask-wearing and getting the COVID 19 vaccine.

In essence, Mr. Ducey is offering families and schools financial incentives to be unsafe and spread the Coronavirus.

Not what I call great thinking there.  

The first of these programs is a ten million dollar grant program for K-12 families, who feel burdened by mask mandates and “unnecessary closures (what the hell does that mean)”  that would fund (up to $7,000 a qualifying child) “for needs related to child care, transportation, online tutoring, and tuition.”

Grants will be available starting August 20, 2021, on a first-come, first-served basis.

Qualifying families to have to be at or below 350 percent of the poverty line and (this is totally unreal) “demonstrate that their current school is isolating, quarantining, or subjecting children to physical COVID-19 constraints in schools, such as requiring the use of masks or providing preferential treatment to vaccinated students — contrary to the provisions established in Laws 2021, Chapter 404, section 12.”

Commenting on this program, Mr. Ducey wrote:

“We are committed to keeping all Arizona kids on track, closing the achievement gap, and equipping underserved students and families with the tools they need to thrive. Our COVID-19 Educational Recovery Benefit will empower parents to exercise their choice when it comes to their child’s education and COVID-19 mitigation strategies. It will also give families in need the opportunity to access educational resources like tutoring, child care, transportation, and other needs. We know that historically disadvantaged communities bear the brunt of excessive and overbearing measures, and we want to ensure these students are protected.”

Like Doug Ducey really cares about the poor. Where is the $12 million to expand KidsCare Mr. Governor?

The Governor’s office also included statements from fellow Alternative Reality Republican Senate and House Leaders Karen Fann and Rusty Bowers.

Speaker Bowers’s comment was especially disjointed. He relayed:

“I’m in full agreement with the Governor. Families need to have options available to keep their children from being politicized. We want our children safe, healthy and achieving, and we can do it all at the same time.”

How are people who want to keep children safe by wearing masks politicizing them?

How are schoolchildren and staff safe when some are masked and vaccinated and others are not?

Mr. Ducey also announced a $163 million program for K-12 traditional and charter schools that received limited COVID 19 relief dollars as long as they follow all state laws (which means do not have mask or vaccine mandates) and remain open for in-person instruction.

In a comment reported by AZ Central, Mr. Ducey’s spokesperson C.J. Karmargin said:

“This is nothing to do with punishing schools. This is all to do with rewarding those schools who are not putting additional mandates on the students they serve.”

Remember, by mandates, Karmargin is talking about wearing masks and getting the Coronavirus vaccine that will keep children and educators alive, healthier, and safe. 

Maybe one measuring criterion Mr. Ducey can institute for rewarding grants to schools is the COVID infection rate. The greater the infection and mortality rate, the more the school has demonstrated compliance with state law and can receive the grant monies.

People should wonder how much the loss of human life would have increased if Doug Ducey was one of the leaders during the Black Death in the Middle Ages or the Influenza Pandemic in the last century?

Mr. Ducey’s actions are contrary to the public good and madness. 

Superintendent Hoffman, Democratic Leader Bolding, and Tucson Mayor Regina Romero react to Ducey’s Incentives to Spread the Coronavirus. 

Meanwhile in the world of reality and keeping education stakeholders safe, Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman posted on social media:

Arizona House Democratic Leader and Secretary of State Candidate Reginald Bolding equated Ducey’s actions to the antagonists from the Hunger Games, stating:

“Governor Ducey has created his own Hunger Games for Arizona public schools. It’s a sickening irony that he’s doing this by dangling millions of federally provided funds for COVID-19 relief and forcing school districts to choose between the health and safety of kids and educators, or millions in additional funding that Republicans have withheld for years. With the delta variant running rampant and COVID-19 cases among children on the rise, it’s disgusting to put a bounty on spreading this illness to kids and punishing schools that try to operate safely. At the same time, the Governor is attempting to revive a failed and unpopular effort to expand private-school vouchers, using misinformation and anti-mask hysteria as an excuse. Ironically, many private schools, including Brophy Prep, require masks and vaccinations to attend. We continue to stand with public schools that responsibly opt to protect their students and staff during this pandemic and condemn the Governor playing with the lives of children and educators to appease a narrow and misinformed segment of his political base.”

Tucson Mayor Regina Romero also posted on social media:

“Has Governor Doug Ducey gone mad? This is absolutely evil and grotesque.
School districts should not have to choose between protecting their students and receiving federal funds that the Governor has sat on until now.”

What Doug Ducey is doing with these two school funding incentive programs is launching a race to put children and educators in the hospital and cemetery. 

Do not fall into the Know Nothing-Science Denying-Anti Mask-Anti Vaxer Trap. 

Wear a Mask.

Get the COVID 19 Vaccine. 




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