Senate HELP Committee Examines Unprecedented Mental Health Consequences Amid COVID

April 28, 2021

Today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing entitled, “Examining Our Covid-19 Response: Using Lessons Learned to Address Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders.” This is the fourth hearing on the coronavirus pandemic the Committee has held in the 117th Congress.

Burr: US Must Foster Greater Innovation at Home, Mitigate Potential Foreign Influence Risks

April 22, 2021

Today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing entitled, “Protecting U.S. Biomedical Research: Efforts to Prevent Undue Foreign Influence.” This is the first hearing the Committee has held with Administration officials to examine foreign threats to American biomedical research in the 117th Congress. In his opening remarks, Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC) detailed the credible, ongoing threats to America’s biomedical research enterprise by foreign adversaries, most notably the People’s Republic of China. Ranking Member Burr also highlighted the valuable role of the private sector, academia, and global collaboration in maintaining America’s leadership in biomedical innovation.

Burr: Parent Choice, State Flexibility Paramount in Any Bipartisan Child Care Solution

April 21, 2021

Today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing entitled, “Supporting Children, Workers, and Families by Strengthening America’s Child Care Sector.” In his opening remarks, Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC) highlighted the critical role of child care providers to families across the nation, especially during the coronavirus pandemic when essential workers were vital to the nation’s response. Additionally, Ranking Member Burr underscored the importance of prioritizing parents’ choice and state flexibility in any meaningful, bipartisan child care solution.

Burr: Workforce Development Should Continue to Be Space for Bipartisan Solutions

April 20, 2021

Today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing entitled, “COVID-19 Recovery: Supporting Workers and Modernizing the Workforce Through Quality Education, Training, and Employment Opportunities.” This is the first hearing the Committee has held on workforce development amid the coronavirus pandemic in the 117th Congress. In his opening remarks, Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC) highlighted the opportunity for bipartisanship by enhancing specialized job training programs and harnessing innovation to build a strong American workforce that keeps pace with the demands of the 21st century global economy.

Burr: Cancelling Extraordinary Amounts of Student Loan Debt Wrong Solution for Borrowers, Taxpayers

April 15, 2021

Today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held its nomination hearing for James Kvaal to serve as the Under Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education. In his opening remarks, Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC) underscored his disapproval of massive student loan debt forgiveness and offered his legislation, the Repay Act, as an alternative and sustainable bipartisan policy solution that simplifies repayment options for borrowers by establishing one easy-to-navigate income-based repayment plan.

Burr: Our COVID-19 Response Must Leverage Technology to Address Public Health Disparities

March 25, 2021

Today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing entitled, “Examining Our COVID-19 Response: Improving Health Equity and Outcomes by Addressing Health Disparities.” This is the third hearing on the coronavirus pandemic the Committee has held in the 117th Congress. In his opening remarks, Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC) acknowledged the shortfalls in the nation’s pandemic response in underserved communities, including seniors, children, Americans with disabilities, and rural communities. Additionally Ranking Member Burr underscored the importance of maintaining flexibility as part of the nation’s emergency response and leveraging new technology to better analyze, prepare for, and respond to the next public health emergency.

Burr Supports Dep Sec of Education Nom, Urges Democrats to Follow Suit Despite Historical Practice

March 24, 2021

Today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held its nomination hearing for Cindy Marten to serve as Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education. In his prepared opening remarks, Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC) highlighted Ms. Martin’s experience in elementary and secondary education and underlined the importance of having experience in the higher education system, especially as federal student loan debt has taken on a new urgency. Additionally, Ranking Member Burr noted his Democrat colleagues’ abandonment of their “guilty until nomination” practice that was frequently used against nominees under the previous Administration.

Sen Burr Supports Walsh to Serve as Secretary of Labor

March 22, 2021

Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC) expressed his support of Marty Walsh’s nomination to serve as Secretary of Labor ahead of today’s vote. Marty Walsh testified before the Senate HELP Committee on February 4, 2021. During his nomination hearing, Ranking Member Burr underscored the need of a skilled American workforce and stressed the importance of reopening economy.

Burr Urges Public Health Officials to Better Prepare for Next Pandemic Threat

March 18, 2021

Today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee held a hearing entitled “Examining Our Covid-19 Response: An Update from Federal Officials.” This is the Committee’s first hearing on the coronavirus pandemic in this Congress with Administration officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). In his opening remarks, Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC) urged the CDC, NIH, FDA, and HHS to take stock of coronavirus preparedness and response shortfalls and to keep pace with science by utilizing private sector partners and innovators. Additionally, Ranking Member Burr highlighted the successful policies and programs that enhanced America’s response efforts, such as [the laws allowing for] Emergency Use Authorization and Operation Warp Speed. Ranking Member Burr pressed these officials to apply this framework in addressing the nation’s next set of public health challenges.

Senator Burr Questions Labor Nom Julie Su on Failures, Fraud in CA’s Massive Unemployment Crisis

March 16, 2021

Today, the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee held its nomination hearing for Julie Su, the California and Workforce Development Agency Secretary, to serve as Deputy Secretary of Labor. In his opening remarks, Senate HELP Committee Ranking Member Richard Burr (R-NC) outlined California’s economic failures, which include its high unemployment rate and its mass evacuation by businesses to better markets, such as Texas and North Carolina. Ranking Member Burr also criticized Secretary Su’s role in failing to address the massive fraud within California’s unemployment insurance system and questioned whether Secretary Su has the skills to lead a larger department.