My Guiding Principle

My guiding principle has informed my life as an activist, a lawyer, a business owner and now in public service.  That principle is; No matter who you are, where you come from, what you look like, what your abilities, who you love or how you identify, we all have dignity and deserve full equality, justice and the opportunity to succeed.  A simple proposition perhaps, yet one that is consistent with the greatest movements in our country’s history; from Abolition to Civil Rights, from Seneca Falls to Stonewall.

This principle guides me in every policy decision I make, whether it is education, transportation, health care, economic development or any of the other numerous issues that come before me.  Many of you have partnered with me to advance policies that help our families. I’m proud of what we’ve done together thus far.

Issues and Priorities

  • Passing the minimum wage law so workers can better provide for their families.  
  • Paid family leave so a parent doesn’t have to choose between going to work to provide for the family or staying home to care for a sick loved one. 
  • Farmworkers Rights law so those working on farms get the same protections and rights as other workers. 
  • Marriage Equality and GENDA, among other measures, to recognize and move us closer toward equality for our LGBTQ community. 
  • The historic housing reform and tenant protections that balanced the needs for someone to have stability in their home with that of property rights.
  • The long overdue criminal justice reforms to address inequities toward people of color and people living in poverty.
  • The Empire State Apprenticeship Program –a 5-year $50 million dollar investment to incentivize the use of apprenticeships in industries such as advanced manufacturing, IT, health care and other expanding or emerging industries.
  • Education for our children is paramount.  Every child deserves a good education and a shot at a brighter tomorrow.  I have fought and will continue to fight for policies and funding that breaks down barriers and invests in our children from pre-k to graduation day into career and higher education. 
  • And this year, my first year as Chair of the Assembly Aging Committee we fought for and received historical increases in funding which will help older New Yorkers stay in their homes by providing home and community based services such as cleaning and housekeeping, personal care, and case management services.

Creating economic opportunity for all of our families, advancing legislation that brings full dignity and equality to all in our community, ensuring ALL our children receive a good education and fighting for workers’ rights have been, and will continue to be my top priorities.