Thirty-two State Representatives and two State Senators committed to advocating for the 2018 Fair Shot Agenda, a set of four legislative initiatives intended to address the growing gap between the wealthy and the middle class. Last year’s Fair Shot Agenda included a $15 minimum wage, school building repairs, earned paid sick days and a more progressive car tax. There was some success: earned paid sick days was passed, in addition to a modest increase in the minimum wage.
This year, the Fair Shot Agenda includes:
- Passing a budget that protects our neighbors
- Investing in school facilities to ensure safe and appropriate schools for our young people
- Creating pay equity and raising the minimum wage to $15 for all workers
- Ensuring affordable long-term care and prescription drugs for seniors
“Everyone deserves a fair shot at a better future. But for too many Rhode Islanders, working hard and playing by the rules no longer guarantees security. We need bold state action to change that. It starts with a budget that protects our neighbors,” said Representative Aaron Regunberg (Democrat, District 4, Providence). “We are here to announce that, together, we will stand up against attempts to cut critical programs that our neighbors rely on, and fight for investments in healthcare, housing, and education. Just this year, big corporations and the wealthiest 1 percent used their influence to get an enormous tax handout from Republicans in Congress. In Rhode Island, we can use our power to tilt the scales back towards everyday families who are dealing with real problems.”
“For our children to thrive and succeed, their schools must be safe, warm, and suitable for learning,” said Representative Gregg Amore (Democrat, District 65, East Providence). “Too many of our schools are leaky, moldy, and not appropriately weatherized. It’s critical that we pass the school facilities bond proposal this year so that we can ensure that every child can learn and grow in an appropriate environment.”
“For Rhode Island to move forward, we must increase the state’s minimum wage to $15 per hour and ensure that everyone is paid fairly for their hard work,” said Representative Susan Donovan (Democrat, District 69, Bristol). “Rhode Island women working full time still make only 87 cents to the dollar that their male counterparts make and it’s worse for women of color. Raising wages and standards for workers is key to ensuring everyone has a fair shot, because we all do better when we do better.”
“Our families need affordable, accessible long-term care options to allow their loved ones to age in dignity,” said Representative Lauren Carson (Democrat, District 75, Newport). “Seniors and people living with disabilities deserve high-quality care. We’re calling on state leaders to improve our home care system while ensuring that home care workers are treated fairly. And we’re also calling for the passage of legislation to bring the cost of prescription drugs down so that no one has to choose between their medication and other essentials.”
In addition to the four representatives mention above, the legislators supporting the package rollout were Representatives Edith Ajello (Democrat, District 1, Providence), Joseph Almeida (Democrat, District 12, Providence), Jean Philippe Barros (Democrat, District 59, Pawtucket), David Bennett (Democrat, District 20, Warwick), Christopher Blazejewski (Democrat, District 2, East Providence, Providence), Julie Casimiro (Democrat, District 31, North Kingstown, Exeter), Robert Craven (Democrat, District 32, North Kingstown), Helder Cunha (Democrat, District 64, East Providence), Grace Diaz (Democrat, District 11, Providence), Kathleen Fogarty (Democrat, District 35, South Kingstown), Arthur Handy (Democrat, District 18, Cranston), Katherine Kazarian (Democrat, District 63, East Providence), Jason Knight (Democrat, District 67, Warren), John Lombardi (Democrat, District 8, Providence), Shelby Maldonado (Democrat, District 56, Central Falls), Carol McEntee (Democrat, District 33, Narragansett, South Kingstown), Michael Morin (Democrat, District 49, Woonsocket), Marcia Ranglin-Vassell (Democrat, District 5, Providence), Evan Shanley (Democrat, District 24, Warwick), Scott Slater (Democrat, District 10, Providence), Teresa Tanzi (Democrat, District 34, Narragansett, South Kingstown), Camille Vella Wilkinson (Democrat, District 21, Warwick), Moira Walsh (Democrat, District 3, Providence), Raymond Hull (Democrat, District 6, Providence), Jeremiah O’Grady (Democrat, District 46, Lincoln), Deborah Ruggiero (Democrat, District 74, Jamestown), Ramon Perez (Democrat, District 13, Providence, Johnston) and Anastasia Williams (Democrat, District 9, Providence), as well as Senators Harold Metts (Democrat, District 6, Providence) and Paul Jabour (Democrat, District 5, Providence).