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Call to Action - CLIA Needs Your Help - Tell Congress to Help the Restart


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https://cruising.org/en/clia-action-center

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TAKE ACTION:
Tell Congress to Help Restart the Cruise Industry!
Yesterday, CLIA called on the Biden Administration and the CDC to lift the Framework for Conditional Sailing Order (CSO) and allow cruising to be on track to resume sailing in the U.S. by the beginning of July 2021. 
 
Today, we get to work—and we need your help! Please visit the CLIA Action Center to email, call, and/or Tweet at your elected officials in the House and Senate and tell them to urge the Biden Administration to lift the CSO. Our announcement was a big step, and the journey is just beginning. We have our work cut out for us, but the facts are on our side. 
 Since the industry’s voluntary suspension one year ago, cruise lines have been prevented from operating in the U.S. even as public health conditions have improved and other sectors have opened or continued to operate throughout the pandemic. 
 
 Over the past eight months, a highly-controlled resumption of cruising has continued in Europe, Asia, and the South Pacific - with nearly 400,000 passengers sailing and additional markets scheduled to come online in the spring and summer. 
 
 The industry’s enhanced public health measures are working, with fewer than 50 confirmed cases of COVID-19 onboard CLIA member cruise line ships since resumption started last summer, based on public reporting. 
 
• More than 300,000 jobs have been lost in the US due to the suspension of cruises. The majority of those impacted are independent business owners or individuals employed by small- to medium-sized businesses. 
 
 Restarting cruises as part of the broader travel industry will provide a much-needed boost to the U.S. economy - with the cruise industry supporting nearly 450,000 American jobs and contributing over $55.5 billion annually, prior to the pandemic. 
 
 An early-July resumption is in line with President Biden’s forecast for when the US will be “closer to normal.” 
 
 There is no such thing as ‘normal’ without cruise ships! The cruise community is a vital part of the travel and tourism economy and should be afforded the same opportunities to begin to recover from the devastating impacts of the pandemic. 
It will take every single one of us to be successful.
The Time is Now. Will You Join Us?
JOIN US!
 
 
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The target audience for your Congressman and Senators is HHS and it's just confirmed yesterday Secretary,  Xavier Becerra The CDC works for him.

The biggest hurdle is to get CDC Director Walenski to acknowledge facts on the ground instead of a combination of both good and bad science she seems to be relying on along with an unrealistically cautious approach to disease control in the case of SARS2. She needs to be convinced that waiting for additional benefits of strict mitigation measures (like closing ports to cruise ships to prevent transmission of COVID) are more harmful than any benefits that will be gained.

She's already acknowledged, in the video I linked to elsewhere, that deaths and hospitalizations - the true measure of disease burden - have fallen dramatically since the introduction of vaccines in mid-December.  Given the vaccination requirement to sail that appears to be base line for RCL, given the demonstration of disease mitigation aboard cruise ships that CLIA has articulated and advanced in their news release, given the huge economic impact that a continuation of the cruise ship ban in the US is unnecessary and harmful.

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1 hour ago, Matt said:

I hope this effort moves the needle.

I was surprised in the past to find that our voices do get heard rather easily by our elected officials.  I messaged a senator on a subject years back and he directly answered me  a few days after the canned automated response  came back. I developed a rapport with a congressman under similar circumstances. I'm nobody special. Justa constituent.  I just sent a detailed message to Marco Rubio... You can to at... https://www.rubio.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contact

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Or Call Senator Rubio's office at (866) 630-7106, 

The CLIA page gets us to Rubio, Scott and Mast offices...Only takes a few seconds add to the list... Unless of course you don't want to sail...

 

 

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My FL Reps are Senators Rick Scott, and Marco Rubio, my Congressman is Ted Deutch. I know Scott is strongly against the cruise ship ban and has said so in his news letters. Rubio I can't say and Deutch is involved in the Alaska stuff I think.

I expect I'll get a boiler plate cut and pasted email from staff members of theirs but I'll be interested to see how they respond .... and they all will.

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I filled out the form yesterday but unfortunately all I got back from all three of my representatives in Texas were form emails thanking me for my concerns. Two of them thought I was commenting about small business during the pandemic. And one thought I was commenting about vaccine availability. I guess I should complain since I sent them a form letter myself, but I’m thinking I may half to call directly so they understand my point. 

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45 minutes ago, Oliver said:

I filled out the form yesterday but unfortunately all I got back from all three of my representatives in Texas were form emails thanking me for my concerns. Two of them thought I was commenting about small business during the pandemic. And one thought I was commenting about vaccine availability. I guess I should complain since I sent them a form letter myself, but I’m thinking I may half to call directly so they understand my point. 

I believe most emails are read and replied to by staffers.  I've received some replies myself that have nothing to do with what I've emailed about.

I think a phone call or even a written letter gets more notice than an email nowadays.

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23 minutes ago, DunkelBierJay said:

Florida and Alaska reps are already exerting pressure. We need to get flyover reps aware and involved. Becerra is not going to do anything until these agencies are shamed publicly. It's the language they speak, so I have my duolingo app set on it.

Agreed.  We need a dogpile. 

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As @Mattreported earlier in his latest blog post, DeSantis and cruise line big wigs had a press conference today at PC. Here’s the Facebook link to the Governor’s post on the matter. Quickly scanning comments I didn’t see any reference to “Petri dish!” Lol There are almost 400 comments so there may be one but everything I read said OPEN THE PORTS! 

Hmmmm link won’t post. 
 

Link to Gov website instead. He’s got balls! Wants $250 million to rebuild industry 

https://www.flgov.com/2021/03/26/governor-ron-desantis-highlights-floridas-vital-cruise-industry-calls-on-cdc-to-rescind-no-sail-order/?fbclid=IwAR1g76_tfI2DfO7iipowgVFwYE7NrnToQWBdH-i-Eq3kv_eUkrPYn93FRCs

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Here's the problem: Getting cruise lines operating from FL's ports isn't about immigration, isn't about equity and justice, it's about the economics of one state's sector of the US economy, albeit not an insubstantial one. I don't think our "dogpile' is big enough or loud enough to push Becerra of HHS into pushing Walenski of the CDC into action.

"Public shaming" has it's limits based on the 4d news cycle.

I can still hope.

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We’re now getting coverage on our local news. Floridians in general need to get behind this because the cruise industry is one reason we don’t have a state income tax. 
 

https://www.news4jax.com/news/florida/2021/03/26/gov-desantis-calls-on-cdc-to-lift-no-sail-order-on-cruise-ships/?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=snd&utm_content=wjxt4&fbclid=IwAR1PfUI5kQb45z2DRVCUlQ2W9O8PZKOaL6L8gCcUca_m6DhiTeaZXnyh4dU

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8 hours ago, Oliver said:

I filled out the form yesterday but unfortunately all I got back from all three of my representatives in Texas were form emails thanking me for my concerns. Two of them thought I was commenting about small business during the pandemic. And one thought I was commenting about vaccine availability. I guess I should complain since I sent them a form letter myself, but I’m thinking I may half to call directly so they understand my point. 

Thats to be expected... Thats the auto generated responses. They will see a big number on the same subject, look into it and take some action. Then expect a follow up response explaining that action. 

 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

I received a response that was not some generic cut and paste that all emails get.

 

Dear ,

 

Thank you for contacting me to express your support for restarting cruises out of U.S. cruise port terminals, including Port Canaveral.  I am in full agreement with you and have made resumption of cruises from U.S. ports a priority.

 

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is the barrier to allowing cruises from U.S. ports. Unfortunately, the Administration's new CDC Director, Rochelle Walensky, has failed to update the Framework for Conditional Sailing (CSO) that was put in place last year.  With the large numbers of Americans having immunity by either recovering from COVID or having been vaccinated, or who are practicing safe distancing and safety protocols, it is clear that the CDC policy is outdated.  Also, cruise lines have put in place many safety protocols for overseas cruises and the CDC must recognize that they can be put in place for ships leaving U.S. ports.

 

Also, CDC guidance can be easily skirted by U.S. citizens who fly to the Caribbean and board a cruise ship, sail, and return to the United States, avoiding all of the restrictions that the CDC has proposed for U.S. cruise passengers. Among the steps I have taken to get the Biden Administration to revise the CDC policy are:

 

  • Cosponsored H.R. 2554, directing CDC to allow safe cruises by July 1, 2021;
  • Recent meeting with White House officials to ask the COVID Task Force to appoint a point person to work directly to resolve issues between CDC and cruise lines;
  • Wrote to the Administration outlining reasons to open the United States for cruises; and 
  • Met with cruise industry officials and the Florida Ports Caucus Members of Congress to better collaborate on a path forward.

 

The bottom line is that U.S. cruising is responsible for tens of thousands of Florida jobs, and they are needlessly suffering. Resolving this issue quickly is a top priority for me.

 

It is an honor to serve you in Congress. Please visit www.posey.house.gov/survey2021 to share your views with me on issues before Congress and to sign up for our periodic newsletters and telephone townhall meetings. Please reach out to us if we can be of service to you.

 

Sincerely, 
Bill Posey
Bill Posey
Member of Congress
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  • 3 weeks later...

I received a response from my congressman on Friday afternoon and the contents of the letter I received was underwhelming.

All it really did was thank me for contacting him "regarding the impact of the coronavirus on our hospitality and food service economy".

For the most part, the next three paragraphs were just boilerplate statements on passing and extending the PPP, emergency economic bills, and various other financial relief bills.

NOT ONCE was the cruise industry or it's treatment by the CDC mentioned. I feel like we're all just yelling into an empty cavern and not being heard or listened to.

 

The only thing that made reading this letter tolerable was that I had arrived at an all-inclusive resort in Playa del Carmen earlier that day.

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7 minutes ago, SPS said:

NOT ONCE was the cruise industry or it's treatment by the CDC mentioned. I feel like we're all just yelling into an empty cavern and not being heard or listened to.

Whole-hartedly agree with you.

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It took a month, but I actually got a cruise-tailored response.  Granted there's no money for the cruise lines in the American Rescue Plan but I'll just overlook that for now.

 

Thank you for taking the time to contact us about the recent guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) regarding cruise ships. We appreciate hearing from Coloradans, as it helps us better serve our great state in the United States Senate.

We are all eager for life to get back to normal, but we must ensure we resume activities in the safest way possible. These guidelines will help the cruise industry fully reopen while protecting the public from COVID-19.

Public health experts at the CDC issued guidance in October 2020 that outlined a plan to safely resume cruise ship travel over a series of months. On April 2nd  the CDC announced it had transitioned to the second step in the process. Cruise lines must now produce daily reports of COVID-19 cases and illnesses, implement routine testing of all crew members, and establish a plan for vaccinations. The next phase will add simulated voyages to allow crews to practice under these new guidelines prior to resuming trips.

We know that the cruise industry, like many other businesses, is hurting. That’s why we included $750 million for the tourism industry in the American Rescue Plan. We will continue working to get vaccines in arms to get American back to work and back to normal as soon as possible.

We always value hearing directly from Coloradans. We hope you will continue to share your thoughts as we work together for Colorado and our country. For more information about our priorities, please visit our website at www.hickenlooper.senate.gov. Again, thank you for reaching out.

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