Investing in our youth and families

Increasing minimum wage
If the minimum wage had kept up with inflation from its high point in the 1970’s, it would be over $20 an hour now. We cannot expect Connecticut residents to support themselves in a high-cost state when a full-time, minimum-wage job pays barely over $20,000 per year. Once we get the minimum salary to a livable wage, we can index it to inflation and prevent this problem from occurring in the future.

Allowing the dreamers to access institutional aid
Right now, an entire generation of children pays into our public higher education system, but do not have the ability to access the funds to which a percentage of their tuition is diverted. This institutional inequity could be resolved easily.

Aid in dying
Rather than watching a loved one die in agony over a long period, this legislation would give adults who provide informed consent the ability to pass when they choose.

Paid family and medical leave
A medical leave system would be relatively inexpensive to administer, and would be funded by employees at a 0.5 percent payroll tax. New Jersey and New York now have paid leave laws and will quickly begin to attract our best and brightest if we do not provide the same.

Universal basic income
To help address poverty and unemployment rates, we could adopt a universal basic income, which would give individuals more financial security. Under this measure, every person would be guaranteed an established minimum income regardless of their social class, gender, place of residency, employment status or age.

Increasing vaccination rates
Any parent can send their child to public school without vaccinating their child by using a religious exemption loophole. As a result, Connecticut vaccination has decreased by 10 percent since just 2014 – only 70 percent of children are getting their recommended vaccinations by the time they are two. We need to undergo an education campaign regarding the safety and efficacy of vaccinations.