Massachusetts has consistently ranked worst among states for transportation infrastructure. I watched in horror as the Red Line derailed, busses and trains caught fire with people in them (including myself!) and entire communities were destabilized because our vital public transit system failed. The transportation infrastructure of the T is decades past the expiration date. Our roads are crumbling and unsafe for vehicle travel. We need to change this by investing in our transportation infrastructure for our communities.
Massachusetts residents overwhelmingly support universal healthcare. It is so popular among our communities that both chambers of our State House have passed an act to establish it. Unfortunately, the bill is stalled in committee and will likely not pass without a federal waiver. We need to fight for it at the federal level and advocate for healthcare for all. The current for-profit system ignores the needs of individuals and Republicans have constantly sought to abolish key protections of the ACA. As a member of Progressive Massachusetts; we have organized for this program, fought for it and now it's time to work for it in Congress.
Workers fought for decades to establish labor unions so that they could make decisions about conditions affecting their work. We need to expand and strengthen these protections. This includes graduate students, dishwashers, engineers, manufacturing workers. Workers deserve the right to improve their working conditions ✊🏽. We should help make it easier to form a union, create real penalties for companies that violate labor laws and overturn "right to work" laws which work against employees.
As a bioengineer, I know from first hand experience how these life-saving biotechnology products are developed and commercialized from concept to finished product. Recently, a bill passed the house to allocate federal funding for engineering biology research. This was before the global COVID-19 crisis. Recognizing the duty of the federal government to invest in biotechnology is a good first step. This investment will spur innovation and promote competition. But we need to make sure that we provide appropriate oversight and administer that spending accordingly with progress. In order to do that we need to know exactly what questions to ask and the deliverables we need to define to ensure that the products are safe and effective. Also, we need to insert provisions into spending bills to make sure that price gouging does not occur with the American public. Our health and lives are at stake. No one should die because because they cannot afford treatment.
The Federal Government has a duty to respect the sovereignty of indigenous land and ensure the economic and educational prosperity of indigenous people. Government leadership has historically failed at this. American Indian reservations have some of the highest rates of opioid addiction, suicide and violence against women. We must work with the indigenous community, talk to the indigenous community and respond to their needs. In other words, Native People need to be the Authority on Native Issues.
Economic justice involves putting forth an "Economic Bill of Rights". Which includes: A federal jobs guarantee, tuition free public college and a federal minimum wage of $15/hour and increasing the federal poverty level to reflect a Modern America. Ending corporate stock buy backs which artificially inflate the value of a company. Economic justice is about creating a healthy and successful economy with sustained growth that works for everyone.