The Missouri Legislature’s bipartisan St. Louis delegation has started a campaign to buy each St. Louis area nurse a gift card to a local restaurant, during the COVID-19 pandemic.
State Rep. Mary Elizabeth Coleman, R-Arnold, a delegation co-secretary, says the aim is to provide each nurse with a $50 gift card.
“The nurses on the front lines of coronavirus are our true superheroes,” Coleman says. “And we love our local restaurants and want them to survive the crisis too, and this is an effort to combine both.”
Coleman says there are about 5,600 nurses in active service in the St. Louis region. The St. Louis-area delegation’s fundraising goal is $280,000.
“Working with Mercy and BJC, with St. Luke’s and the SSM System, and so doing everything that we can to try to make sure that those who are on the front lines are able to receive the service,” says Coleman.
Coleman says 100 percent of donations will be used for gift cards, adding that lawmakers’ campaigns in both parties will handle administrative expenses.
She emphasizes that this is a bipartisan effort. State Reps. Ian Mackey, D-St. Louis, and Tracy McCreery, D-Olivette, are also leading the effort.
“As we all work to provide support for our neighbors during this difficult time, we’ve decided as friends and colleagues to join together and support those risking their lives, and the health of their families, to keep the rest of us safe,” Representative Mackey says.
State health officials announced Monday afternoon that there are now 4,388 confirmed coronavirus cases in Missouri, along with 114 deaths.
Click here to listen to Brian Hauswirth’s full interview with State Rep. Mary Elizabeth Coleman, R-Arnold, which was recorded on April 7, 2020:
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