New York, NY (October 25, 2018) – Today, leading labor, advocacy, good government and community groups announced a newly-formed campaign to support proposals that would improve democracy in New York City. The new coalition, “Democracy Yes”, will urge New Yorkers to vote yes on ballot questions proposed by the City’s 2018 Charter Revision Commission. These proposals, which will appear on the November 6 General Election ballot, would take big money out of politics by improving the City’s campaign finance system, create a civic engagement commission, and make changes to strengthen and diversify community boards.
Details of the proposals can be found here.
The coalition’s membership is growing quickly. It currently includes the Advocacy Institute, African Communities Together, Arts & Democracy, the NY Civic Engagement Table, Chhaya CDC, CWA District 1, Demos, EveryVoice, Generation Citizen, Korean Americans for Political Advancement, MinKwon Center for Community Action, NY Immigration Coalition, Participatory Budgeting Project, Patriotic Millionaires, Reinvent Albany, SEIU Local 32BJ, Strong for All Coalition, Theater of the Oppressed NYC, Transportation Alternatives, UNITE-HERE Local 100, and the Working Families Party.
“We strongly support these three ballot proposals because they amplify the voices of everyday New Yorkers, and create new opportunities for injecting fresh perspectives into the public debate over how to make our city better for everyone. “
– John Kaehny, executive director of Reinvent Albany
“Across the country union members have born the brunt of a political system that is rigged. In NYC we’re fighting to build a stronger democracy. The three proposals on the ballot are an important step in that direction and we wholeheartedly urge New Yorkers to vote Yes, Yes, and Yes on November 6.”
– Dennis Trainor, Vice President, CWA District 1
“As our democratic institutions are threatened by widespread voter disenfranchisement and restrictions to access our government, the Charter Revision proposals will put New York at the forefront of the movement to expand democracy and promote participation of individuals and groups that seek to engage in our democratic process.”
– Hector Figueroa, President, 32BJ SEIU
“Albany campaign finance laws are broken, but in just a few days New Yorkers have a chance to strengthen democracy in our own city while sending a powerful message that we need to unrig the system statewide. We’re asking all WFP voters to vote yes on the charter questions on Nov. 6.”
– Bill Lipton, State Director, New York Working Families Party
“Government needs to do more to engage people in our democracy. By investing in civic engagement, New York City can empower millions of residents to get more involved, step up as leaders, and help government make better decisions. These ballot proposals can help turn New York City into a global leader in democracy.”
– Josh Lerner, Co-Executive Director, Participatory Budgeting Project
“Transportation Alternatives strongly supports a YES vote on Proposal 3 on this year’s general election ballot, instituting terms limits on New York City’s community board system. Term limits have been shown to improve representation, equity, and fairness in offices nationally, and right here in the five boroughs. Such a change would not just match electoral standards common throughout the city, but would also bring new perspectives and voices into our city’s community boards. As we fight for safer and better walking, biking and public transit, we hope every New Yorker will flip their ballot and vote in favor of a more inclusive, democratic New York on election day.”
– Marco Conner, Deputy Director, Transportation Alternatives