ROSEVILLE, Calif. (KTXL) — The White House released a call between President Joe Biden and a Roseville woman Saturday.
Michele Voelkert, the woman from Roseville, was the first guest in Biden’s weekly conversation. They talked about her struggles during the pandemic, which included being laid off from her job.
It all started with a simple letter to Biden, talking about everything she has endured. She didn’t think he would respond, but he did and the conversation helped lift her up.
“Hello? Michele?” Biden said over the phone.
Voelkert says it’s a moment she will never forget.
“It’s something I will cherish forever,” Voelkert told FOX40.
The letter was sent to Biden a few days after Inauguration Day, telling him of how she lost her job in July and struggled getting unemployment. Voelkert says she wrote the letter because of her daughter.
“Show her that you can write a good crafted letter and the attention of our leaders in Washington, and you don’t have to break windows in the Capitol to get things done,” Voelkert said.
Days later the Biden administration called to schedule the chat. The call lasted 20 minutes, but the White House only released a portion of the conversation.
“It just has been a tough time trying to find work,” Voelkert said during the call.
“Working is a part of who you are,” Biden answered. “Like my dad used to say, ‘A job is a lot more than a paycheck. It’s about your dignity, it’s about respect, it’s about your place in the community.’”
Voelkert says she also wanted to tell the president how the pandemic has negatively impacted women.
“I wanted to remind him about people like, women and moms, sitting out here in Roseville, California who may be out of work for the first time in our lives,” Voelkert said. “When he is think about new legislation to not forget about us.”
Biden mentioned his desire to pass the $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill, which would include $1,400 checks for individuals and money for small business.
“We are so glad you are focusing on that,” Voelkert said.
She says she appreciated the president calling, and the chance to share her experiences allowed her to stay positive things will get better soon.
“He really picked me up, so to speak,” Voelkert added. “He gave me a lot of confidence to go into my interview.”
Voelkert says she is still looking for a job, but that on Friday her issues with unemployment were resolved thanks to Assemblyman Kevin Kiley.
She is also working on getting her master’s degree.