The DC City Council’s first vote on the DC 2021 budget on Tuesday included $9 million for Excluded Workers, thanks to a hard-fought campaign by a powerful, multi-racial, multi-lingual, international coalition of unions, immigrant organizations, service providers, sex workers, returning citizens, congregations and more. “For the first time (we) won DC-funded cash assistance to those locked out of unemployment and federal stimulus,” reports DC Jobs with Justice Executive Director Elizabeth Falcon. The city’s budget affects the lives of over 700,000 DC residents, and “this year, we are in the midst of the COVID pandemic and its economic impact as well as an uprising against White supremacy and for Black life,” said Falcon. “The decisions made in the budget have immense weight on the lives, health, livelihood, and housing security of DC families. And the weight of using the budget as a tool for racial equity is even more urgent.” While the vote fell short of the coalition’s goal of $30M, “we are proud that DC will put funds in the hands of DC residents that the federal government has abandoned during the crisis,” said Falcon, crediting Council Chairman Phil Mendelson, Councilmembers Nadeau, and Councilmember Allen for leading efforts to commit the funds.