Healthcare & Reproductive Justice for All
For decades, we’ve starved our public institutions and allowed the profits of insurance companies and the wealthy few to rule our health care system, putting care further and further out of reach for the many. Working New Yorkers — many of them already living at the margins, like immigrants, Black and brown women, and trans and queer people of color — are paying with their lives.
Today, our health system produces enormous inequality, forcing people to chose between their own health or the health of their family and bankruptcy while burdening our healthcare system with hundreds of billions in unnecessary administrative costs to prop up a broken, private system. We need to guarantee healthcare as a universal right by removing it from the market altogether and working to dismantle the injustices in our current for-profit systems. Our health system should promote dignity for care workers and recipients alike, and universal healthcare should be the centerpiece of a newer, greener economy that works for the many — not the few.
- Create a universal healthcare system and eliminate for-profit control of our healthcare system by passing the New York Health Act (NYHA) (S5474) and advocating for its passage. The NYHA would provide quality care for every New York — including mental healthcare, dental care, vision and long-term care — regardless of their immigration or employment status or the size of their bank account.
- Pass Indigent Care Pool Reform (S5954) to change public funding distribution to hospitals that serve poor and working-class communities, a vital safety net for many communities.
- Pass Coverage for All (S1572) to bring healthcare to more than 154,000 New Yorkers immediately by creating a state-funded plan to cover all low-income New Yorkers irrespective of immigration status — especially as our undocumented neighbors are excluded from federal programs like Medicaid.
- Fight to repeal the Global Medicaid Cap, an arbitrary policy of capping increases to our state’s Medicaid spending on our healthcare put in place by Governor Cuomo that starves working families from getting care. These spending limits are one of many attacks on Medicaid to favor for-profit insurance companies.
- Protect and expand access to treasured programs like Medicare and Medicaid at the state level, which provide our most vulnerable New Yorkers with care.
Abortion Rights & Reproductive Justice
- Expand protections to abortion and fight for free, universal reproductive care, including abortion access, prenatal, and maternal care. Black women in New York are more than four times as likely to die in childbirth due to lack of affordable, quality care and structural racism in the healthcare system.
- Pass S8778 to protects legal abortion providers by prohibiting law enforcement from cooperating with out-of-state investigations related to abortion.
- Pass S757 to establish a state fund for abortion access which allows New Yorkers to contribute through their income tax returns.
- Pass S7002 to require that all private insurance plans in New York that offer maternity care coverage also cover abortion care.
- Pass S362 to ensure that more parents can access care from doulas by including doulas as medical service providers for Medicaid recipients.
- Fight for inclusionary sex-ed education in our public schools that is gender and sexual orientation inclusive, culturally responsive, and age appropriate.
Care for Seniors
- Limit for-profit nursing homes (S5269) by allowing the Public Health and Health Planning Council to deny the construction or expansion of any for-profit nursing homes. New York’s COVID-19 response revealed widespread corruption in the management of New York’s for-profit nursing homes, which make up two-thirds of all nursing homes in New York.
- Pass Fair Pay for Home Care (S359A) to grant dignity to patients and workers by ending the practice of wage theft and 24-hour shifts and raising the minimum wage of home care workers, who are predominantly immigrants and women of color, to at least $45,000 per year.
- Increasing funding for mental health services across the state, especially for children and our youth, by subsidizing care and increasing funding for counselors and social workers at schools at the state level and through federal measures such as the Green New Deal for Public Schools Act.
- Pass S563 to allow absences from school for mental or behavioral health.
- Pass S4704 to provide intake workers at shelters with mental health training.
Ending the War on Drugs
- Pass the Safer Consumptions Services Act (S603) to fund overdose prevention centers in New York and community support like counseling and rehabilitative services.
- Pass S1284 to decriminalize low-level drug possession and reorient our approach to drug use through a public health framework, not incarceration.
- Expunge misdemeanor convictions, end the over-policing of Black and brown New Yorkers, and establish the Drug Decriminalization Task Force to develop recommendations for amending laws focussed on public health, not punishment.
Public Health & Worker Protections
Expand free, city-run testing sites and fight for an extension of federal COVID funding to guarantee free testing for all New Yorkers, regardless of insurance status, as well as federal funding for food pantries and programs like Healthy School Meals for All.
Advocate on behalf of workers for safer working conditions and support unionization efforts at retail giants like Starbucks and Amazon, where workers are fighting back against unsafe COVID conditions and for more staffing and fairer pay.
Support state and federal funding for research into long-term effects of COVID and guarantee that COVID treatment is covered by all insurance plans.
Address the effects of COVID on New Yorkers by expanding mental health services across the state, especially for children and our youth.
Provide fuller funding for public hospitals, including New York Health + Hospitals, to provide care for all. New York’s public hospitals and healthcare facilities, like Elmhurst Hospital, provide critical care for immigrant and working-class communities but have long been underfunded.
Pass S1999 which qualifies gig workers as employees and creates more opportunity for workers to qualify for benefits and healthcare and support unionization efforts among gig workers like Los Deliveristas Unidos.
People shouldn’t have to struggle to keep a roof over their head while landlords get rich by raising rents. We must guarantee housing as a human right
Green New York
People shouldn’t have to breathe poisoned air or die in flooded basements while fossil fuel companies make billions killing our planet. We must build publicly-owned renewable energy.
People shouldn’t have to decide between a trip to the emergency room and putting food on the table. We must provide single-payer health care in New York State.