‘It didn’t have to be this way,’ says commercial to run during his Green Bay town hall.
An organization working toward an economy that benefits working-class families will release its first TV ad targeting President Donald Trump Thursday, the same day the president has scheduled appearances in Green Bay and Marinette.
The ad, produced by Opportunity Wisconsin, will run online Thursday and Thursday night on Fox News during a town hall event with Trump in Green Bay. The visit marks the first to Wisconsin by Trump since the coronavirus pandemic and comes as the president has kicked off a series of campaign stops that include in-person gatherings despite continued concerns about the virus.
The 30-second ad features Green Bay resident and former JBS Packerland meat processing plant worker Jarrett Brown. In the ad, Brown states that Trump’s April 29 executive order compelling meat packing plants, such as JBS Packerland, to reopen puts the lives of frontline workers like him at risk.
Brown describes how he witnessed “major safety violations” during his 12 years working in the meatpacking industry, and how employees in that line of work are especially in danger as they are forced to return to work as COVID-19 continues.
“People are afraid to come into work at these plants,” Brown says in the ad. “If President Trump cares about frontline workers, why are we forced to put our lives at risk while big corporations get richer?”
Ensuring worker safety as Wisconsin residents and those across the United States return to work while COVID-19 remains active in the state and elsewhere is among the biggest concerns employees face, Opportunity Wisconsin officials said. The number of positive cases in Wisconsin continues to climb, especially in some counties, according to state Department of Health Services figures.
Outbreaks of the virus have been significant at Wisconsin meat packing plants, including JBS Packerland, and others in the country. Workers at those plants have complained about a lack of personal protective equipment and other working conditions, such as being too close together, that have prompted continued spread of the virus and endanger the lives of those workers and their families.
“This ad is meant to shine a light on one of the biggest concerns facing Green Bay and Badger State residents: how to get back to work without risking their lives,” said Amaad Rivera-Wagner, the Green Bay regional lead for Opportunity Wisconsin.
As Wisconsin residents and those elsewhere struggle amid extraordinary unemployment, lost wages and uncertainty, Trump is bailing out corporations and attempting to slow public health measures such as increased COVID-19 testing, Rivera-Wagner said.
“It didn’t have to be this way,” Rivera-Wagner said. “Wisconsinites and the American people overall are hurting because of the president’s failed policies.”
The Trump administration has said it is working hard to provide relief to people hit hard by the COVID-19-related shutdown. But federal legislators and others have criticized that effort as having failed.
The new ad is among the efforts of Opportunity Wisconsin to tell residents’ personal stories that reveal how policies of the Trump Administration have hurt the economic prospects of many, especially middle- and low-income wage earners. Organization officials said the group seeks to expand economic opportunities for all, not just the wealthy.
Earlier this month, Opportunity Wisconsin held a statewide town hall with Senator Tammy Baldwin and Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes to hear from Wisconsinites about how the Trump administration’s failed leadership during the pandemic has impacted their well-being.