Senate District 25
Kenny Yuko
Senate Democrats Want Legislature to Put Workers First
February 13, 2019
Today, the Ohio Senate Democratic Caucus presented its agenda for the 133rd General Assembly, which will focus on improving workers’ lives and creating good-paying jobs. The nine senators said they will introduce and support legislation that builds opportunity, ensures a better quality of life for all Ohioans and increases fairness in the state.

Members released the following statements regarding their goals and priorities:

Senator Kenny Yuko (D-Richmond Heights), Senate Minority Leader:
“As a union organizer and elected official, I’ve dedicated my entire career to helping working people make a good life, and today I’m renewing that commitment. The Senate Democratic Caucus has a singular priority this General Assembly – ensuring that every bill that passes puts workers first. We will work to pass laws that help workers obtain and maintain meaningful employment and that support them once they get jobs. We have to make sure that our economy works for all Ohioans.”

Senator Cecil Thomas (D-Cincinnati), Assistant Senate Minority Leader:
“Gun violence is a bigger problem in the U.S. than in any other developed country. We need to do everything we can to protect our communities from gun violence by focusing on keeping guns out of the wrong hands.”

Senator Sean J. O’Brien (D-Bazetta), Senate Minority Whip:
“We have significant economic challenges in Ohio. We have seen many good-paying manufacturing jobs leave – in my district alone in the past four years, we have lost over 3,500 jobs with the idling of the GM plant in Lordstown. We need to stop this exodus. We have the infrastructure, the talent and the willingness to work that makes Ohio attractive to existing and new businesses. Our focus should be on stopping manufacturing jobs from leaving and bringing good-paying jobs back.”

Senator Sandra Williams (D-Cleveland), Assistant Senate Minority Whip:
“Our economy is upside down. The wealthy are doing better and better, while most Ohioans are wondering how they’ll pay for an unexpected medical bill, save for retirement or find a job if they get laid off. We must invest in job training to help people get ready for in-demand job opportunities.”

Senator Nickie J. Antonio (D-Lakewood):
“All Ohioans deserve an equal chance to get ahead, be self-sufficient and take care of their families. Ohio cannot truly be competitive in attracting the best and brightest if basic civil rights are not available for all current and future employees. This includes members of the LGBTQ community. With hundreds of Ohio businesses signaling their support for the Ohio Fairness Act, it’s time to pass this bill.”

Senator Hearcel Craig (D-Columbus):
“Putting workers first means ensuring people have the support to get to work and be productive at their jobs. When you’re worried about putting a roof over your families’ heads or being able to afford childcare for your kids, it’s almost impossible to do well at work. I will be a fierce advocate of affordable housing, paid family leave and reducing infant mortality this General Assembly.”

Senator Teresa Fedor (D-Toledo):
“Ohioans want to do good work to make a good life for ourselves and for our children. We must provide critical protections to all people – for their health, well-being and safety. That includes protecting children and adults navigating life after human trafficking and protecting access to safe, high-quality reproductive health care.”

Senator Tina Maharath (D-Columbus):
“The opioid crisis continues to be one the biggest challenges we are facing as a state. Our cities don’t have the resources necessary for prevention and treatment or to address other issues associated with the crisis, like the overwhelmed foster care system. We have to empower local communities – they know best and should have the flexibility to direct resources where they’ll have the most impact.”

Senator Vernon Sykes (D-Akron):
“Investing in early childhood education creates opportunities by boosting student performance, which in turn leads to greater success later in life. But it also creates opportunities in the here and now. While children are learning and growing in early childhood programs, their parents have the opportunity to work, look for work, attend school or receive training. It’s a multi-generational approach to breaking the cycle of poverty.”
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