Cities and the metropolitan regions that surround them are the epicenters of America’s diversity and the command centers of the global knowledge-driven economy – home to nearly two out of every three Americans, Fortune 500 companies, small businesses, innovative entrepreneurs, professional sports teams, cultural institutions, and the world’s best colleges and universities. For our nation and cities to thrive, we must ensure equity Just and fair inclusion must be incorporated into the fabric of our communities and across all policy areas, including economic development, education, criminal justice, civic participation, housing, and healthcare. Through equitable growth strategies that ensure all residents and neighborhoods become more connected to their regional economies, we can tackle poverty, lift up our most distressed neighborhoods and residents, and increase economic security and mobility for all.
Ensure Civil & Human Rights
Mayors must continue to be a beacon for inclusion, tolerance, and respect for all of their residents, in their cities, and in the nation – and cities need the federal government to support those efforts.
- Continue collective efforts to speak out against racism and other forms of discrimination and propose solutions, and join with national civil rights organizations in this effort.
- Examine and improve existing municipal policies and procedures that contribute to a lack of equity in our communities and work to create policies that embed the principles of equity throughout municipal government.
- Ensure that city policies and procedures promote inclusion and that employees are provided the training needed to implement them.
- Advocate for inclusion and non-discrimination in all federal laws, policies, and programs.
- Work toward sentencing and prison reform to reduce disparities between blacks and Hispanics and whites in sentences and incarceration rates and to improve the ability of people released from prison to reenter their communities.
- Continue advocacy for an expanded national effort to reduce poverty and create employment opportunities by increasing job creation, job training, child care availability, transportation availability, affordable housing, and other needed assistance.
- Work with school systems to promote education about differences, the importance of tolerance, and behavior that respects differences among people.
- Facilitate the integration of immigrants and other new residents into the community.
Invest in inclusive neighborhoods, affordable housing, and community development
To grow a strong middle class, we must provide stable and affordable housing to working families across the country.
- Maintain or increase Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding to catch up to inflation.
- Allow cities with a high percentage of blight to use CDBG for economic redevelopment projects in partnership with private developers.
- Increase funding for HOME Investment Partnerships, Housing Choice Voucher Program, and National Housing Trust Fund.
- Help communities increase housing opportunity through timely implementation of the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule.
- Include public housing in infrastructure priorities to modernize and fund necessary capital improvements.
- Reduce homelessness by enacting policy that help achieve self sufficiency.
Improve our public education from pre-k through College
Our economic growth, our safety, and our community’s overall success starts with our ability to provide quality education from early childhood to post-secondary schools.
- Guarantee equal opportunity access to early childhood education starting with pre-k.
- Fully fund youth employment programs.
- Develop and pass a plan to make community college tuition free for all students nationwide.
- Make sure every child has access to computer science and technology that better prepares them for jobs in our modern economy, including the benefits of e-rate programs.
- Prioritize rebuilding schools in infrastructure packages.
Provide affordable and quality health care in every community and promote an environment of health and well-being
The continuing health care debate in Washington has brought into focus the fact that access to affordable, high-quality health care is not only a right, but is essential for us to become a healthy, caring, and vibrant country.
- Preserve patient protections included in the ACA, which have enjoyed bipartisan support and protected innumerable Americans from the catastrophic cost of illness.
- Maintain funding for Medicaid without block granting it to the States.
- Increase support for substance abuse prevention, intervention, treatment, and recovery services.
- Invest in a broad range of mental health services that support diverse populations, including veterans, and the homeless.
- Strengthen incentives and infrastructure to increase local food production, sustainable farming practices, and better access to affordable and healthy food options.
- Invest in medical research and biotechnology to lead the battle against disease.