Equality for All
New York State has the distinction of being an epicenter for the abolitionist, suffragist and LGBTQ social movements. However, despite our being at the forefront of embracing societal change, many parts of the nation still lag in their acceptance of people irrespective of their gender, race, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. As your Congressman, I want to ensure that everyone is treated equally, so I will work with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to accomplish the following:
Women are paid between 15 and 21 cents on the dollar less than men for the same work. To ensure equal participation in the workplace, I will introduce legislation that establishes equal pay for equal work. Additionally, I will propose a federal paid family leave program, which will grant new mothers and fathers eight weeks of paid leave, so no child starts their life without getting to know their parents. This will encourage the sharing of parental responsibilities so that women’s careers are not disproportionately affected by having children. Finally, as an ardent supporter of a woman’s right to choose, I will actively thwart any attempt by our government to roll back the clock on Roe v. Wade (1973).
Although we are a half-century removed from the era of desegregation, people of color still find themselves receiving the short end of the stick. They experience this in the housing market, where they are redlined into neighborhoods that are often more polluted and less safe because they are unable to secure a mortgage. They also experience this in the quality of education their children receive as they are pushed into underperforming schools that lack the financial resources to attract and retain highly experienced educators.In Congress, I will stand as a bulwark against the current government’s attempt to whittle away at the equal rights and protections achieved during the Civil Rights Era. I will seek legislation empowering the Consumer Financial Protection Board to sanction institutions engaged in the practice of redlining. Additionally, I will pursue legislation to ensure that federal education dollars are directed by States towards the immediate needs of impoverished school districts and not misdirected for other purposes.Lastly, I will propose legislation that immediately reinstates the Voting Rights Act of 1965, with an added provision to end partisan gerrymandering, thereby allowing all people of color the right to self-determination within their communities. We need to bolster enforcement of our civil rights laws and curb the disproportionate use of force against unarmed Black and Hispanic people by law enforcement.
Over the past decade, our nation bore witness to a radical shift in the way our ostracized LGBTQ brothers and sisters are treated. Having made significant strides in attaining civil rights and equal protection through Supreme Court decisions like Obergefell v. Hodges (2015), they can marry and divorce as they please, start families, and proudly wear our nation’s uniform. Unfortunately, these advances are under threat by our government, which is trying to reverse them in the name of “religious freedom.” I strongly support the right of lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgendered or questioning individuals to be treated as equal and have all of the same rights and privileges enjoyed by heterosexuals. I will oppose all legislation that attempts to deny equal access or equal protection under the law.