Philadelphia – December 2, 2019 – Senator Art Haywood (D-Montgomery/Philadelphia) joined local elected officials for a dual event focused on economic justice: Senator Haywood announced the People’s Budget and the completion of the Poverty Report at the Johnson House Historic Site in Germantown.
“Through low wages, lack of accessible childcare, unreliable transportation, and poor workforce development efforts, poverty can box many in and the box is hard to break through,” said State Senator Art Haywood (D-Philadelphia). “We can reduce poverty by taxing the rich to pay their fair share to increase revenue and spark productivity in the Commonwealth.”
“As we do well, we can do good, and investing in ordinary people is good for all communities across our Commonwealth,” said State Senator Sharif Street (D-Philadelphia). “I was pleased to join Senator Haywood to announce my support for a budget that prioritizes working people, making investments in our schools, communities, and infrastructure will move Pennsylvania forward.”
“It is time for us to do the right thing,” said Councilwoman-elect Kendra Brooks. “Harrisburg doesn’t prioritize people. A people’s budget for Philadelphia means passing a living wage of at least $15 an hour and abolishing the tipped minimum wage. It restores cash assistance for the poor. It also returns local governance to our City, the economic driver of Pennsylvania, by lifting the many preemptions and limitations structurally holding us back. I stand with State Senator Art Haywood and millions across Pennsylvania in calling for a people’s budget demanding collective investment.”
“Poverty is a public health and generational crisis requiring deliberate measures to overcome. It impacts all areas of life: mental, physical and emotional health; wellbeing, developmental progress and educational outcomes,” said State Representative Isabella Fitzgerald (D-203). “For these reasons I support Senator Art Haywood’s People’s Budget, because it represents a comprehensive, well thought out and compassionate plan for Pennsylvanians. It addresses amongst other things: education, human services, tax relief, and criminal justice. It is an action on the road to financial and economic success for all Pennsylvanians.”
“A massive public investment stands in the way of prosperity for most Pennsylvanians,” said Marc Stier, Director of the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center. “Senator Haywood’s People’s Budget is a creative proposal to address the public investment deficit by asking the rich to pay their fair share of taxes.”
“Johnson House served as a station on the Underground Railroad; its Quaker family members were deeply involved in abolitionist agitation for the cause of freedom,” said Cornelia Swinson, Executive Director of the Johnson House Historic Site. “As militant abolitionists, their work with others included the most progressive renowned advocates of the country – think William Still, Harriet Tubman, Richard Allen, William Lloyd Garrison, Lucretia Mott, Robert Purvis, and John Brown. As advocates, they engaged in action to address racism and social injustice in the country – human rights, education, health care, employment, housing, family instability, food insecurity – to name a few. Though prominent, the range of the Johnson Family’s antislavery involvement was extraordinary!”
Both the announcement of the People’s Budget and the completion of the Poverty Report are part of an economic justice initiative Senator Haywood will roll out in 2020. The Poverty Report has a special focus on Germantown in Senator Haywood’s district, and its main goals are to improve workforce development and access to childcare for single mothers.