Social Justice

  • Some of my ideas include reporting police officer’s complaints to the the Public Safety Committee and keeping a database of police officers with at least 5 complaints.
  • I will push for mandating that police officers undergo periodic mental health assessments.
  • It is not enough to just reform policing. The entire criminal justice system needs trans-formative change. The misconduct of prosecutors and judges must be addressed.
  • To bring greater accountability to CT superior court judges, their time period of appointment should be reduced to 4 instead of 8 years. This is more in line with other government positions, it is not as drastic as elected judges, but allows more regular review of judicial conduct.
  • Police officer accountability would be increased by the elimination of the judicially created doctrine of qualified immunity for police officers. There is little incentive for police to conform their conduct to what the law requires when they are largely immune from suit.
  • Prosecuting attorneys have absolute immunity from being sued in civil actions. Knowing that they cannot be civilly liable nor subject to discipline under the normal attorney standards, means that prosecutors are essentially above the law. They then have no incentive to reign in rogue police officers or to avoid using police officers as witnesses in criminal cases. All that is required is the political will to enforce the Rules of Professional Conduct to all attorneys, including prosecuting attorneys.
  • It would be a simple fix to modify the rules so that complaints brought to the judicial review council are considered timely if filed within thee years of notice of the basis for a claim against a judge. It is only fair that the complaining party have notice of the misconduct of a judge before they are able to bring the claim.
  • CT does not allow an effective claim of discrimination in discipline matters, whether based upon race, gender, sexual orientation. This problem needs to be addressed. Those attorneys who have a disability (e.g. alcoholism is a big one, gambling) have some protection. However if one claims race discrimination they will ignore such claims and retaliate against the messenger who tries to raise such claims. There is clear disparity as for example with the New Haven attorney who received a 9 month suspension after deliberately underpaying the state of CT by $250,000.

Education

  • The State of Connecticut must ensure that every child has a Chromebook or laptop and internet access as part of their civil rights.
  • Early college high schools where our seniors can attend Gateway Community College, Southern Connecticut State University and other colleges their senior year instead of going to their high school have proven beneficial to our students’ educational journey. I believe this opportunity is an innovative collaborative approach and for all of our students and parents. The model has been piloted by “Gateway to College” for alternative students in New Haven and we need to make it a district-wide opportunity for all seniors.
  • Disadvantaged students
  • We must provide funding for trauma and restorative practices and end expulsions in all schools.

Jobs

  • Since I entered politics, the youth have been the backbone of my agenda. In order for us to create a better tomorrow, we must continue to invest in our youth and give them the opportunities they deserve. I will champion youth employment, both summer and year-round. This proposal will ensure that the youth of our communities are kept busy, learning the skills needed to become consequential contributors to society. I pledge to keep open our after-school vo-tech high schools to train our youth in construction trades, such as carpentry, plumbing, manufacturing, electrical, etc.
  • I have been a small business owner, having run a financial services company and a restaurant, creating 40 jobs plus. I understand the need for small businesses and ensure that they get assistance from the state of Connecticut during and after the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • An innovative proposal which I will champion and seek to pass enabling state legislation is called the TIF (Tax Increment Financing). The TIF is an authority that is able to issue bonds to stimulate the local economy. The TIF’s creation and ability to address public infrastructure will attract investors and private dollars to grow our grand list and infrastructure. This authority has the potential to create thousands of jobs along Long Wharf and “The Haven”, transforming the waterfronts of both towns. This plan is a win-win – tax revenue increases by growing our grand list, green space, retail, and affordable housing can be provided, and thousands of jobs are created. This idea can benefit our minority contractors, as well as use project labor agreements to help our working men and women in unions. Examples of successful TIF projects include Burlington, Vermont, Brooklyn’s waterfront redevelopment, and Stamford’s harbor-side waterfront redevelopment.

Health Care

  • Having the “Connecticut Public Option” for healthcare available is crucial. COVID-19 has exposed the weaknesses of our local and national healthcare system. Having one’s healthcare tied to their job is risky and the pandemic has shown us that there must be a viable public option that people and businesses can buy into, thus providing steady healthcare. Some of the benefits of the public option include capping costs of essential medications, such as insulin which will be capped at $100. Furthermore, individuals 26 and under will continue to have full coverage. Everyone deserves to have access to healthcare as a human right.
  • We must maximize the abilities of professionals like naturopaths and others so that we optimize our immune systems. Are immune systems are key in fighting viruses. Therefore, healthcare will not become “sickness” care. Furthermore, this proposal will begin to address the health inequities that have been exposed.

Environment

  • The climate of our planet is increasingly becoming a concern and I will make sure to do my part in combating the effects of climate change on our communities.
  • I will push for a CT Green New Deal, advocating for a more environmentally friendly transportation system with electric school buses and city buses that run on natural gas and hybrid technology. This proposal will make sure that any decision made in the name of improving our environment will have equitable affects on communities of color.
  • If you want to learn more, visit https://www.lcv.org/chispa/