The State and our families are being challenged in so many ways. The COVID-19 pandemic, the resulting economic downturn and racial injustice have converged upon us and we must face all simultaneously. If we do so by caring for one another, supporting, and helping one another, we will get through this and we will be stronger for it.
I join the Governor in continuing our calls on the federal government to take leadership during this COVID-19 pandemic. Leadership by creating strategies to distribute vaccinations and make testing available fully and equitably. Leadership by offering another stimulus package that will offer direct assistance to State and Local governments so we can continue to provide services our families need and will get our economy rolling again.
I believe that we will battle the COVID-19 pandemic with the strength that New Yorkers are known for, but we cannot shoulder the burden on our own. We need the federal government to step up. We have done so much on our own, and so many of our families have sacrificed so much. I join my colleagues and the governor in calling on the Biden Administration to put forth the leadership that will allow us to beat this virus, support our families, and rebuild our economy.
New Yorkers were the first state to deal with the COVID-19 crisis and we have done it with courage and innovation. As a state, we have fought a good fight and I know that many of us are tired and have reached the end of our rope. But, as our former Governor and President, Franklin Roosevelt, said: “When you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.”
And, not only will we hang on, we will also move forward and address the ills that COVID-19 has exposed. We must address and correct those policies that have allowed inequities and disparities in healthcare, housing, job security, and education –many based on race and economic status.
We will take steps necessary to help our families and businesses get through this and move toward full recovery, renewed. As the Assembly’s Chair of the Economic Development Committee, I know that we can help all our New Yorkers if we work toward a common goal with equity and justice in mind. We must invest in broadband access, transportation, economic infrastructure, and job training that will lead to economic prosperity for our families and our future.
I am committed to doubling my efforts to address those inequities dividing our families. We must seize this opportunity to grow and move forward by putting our families first and righting the wrongs of the past. We will build greater opportunities for our families and our state this year through the lens of racial and economic justice.