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Democratic congressional candidate Amy Kennedy

Kennedy releases Workers’ Bill of Rights plan

By David Wildstein, May 05 2020 10:46 am

Amy Kennedy has released a nine-point Workers’ Bill of Rights as she seeks the Democratic nomination for Congress in New Jersey’s 2nd district.

“As the daughter of union members and a union member myself, I understand the importance of empowering our workers, expanding access to and protecting hard-earned benefits, and investing in creating good-paying jobs,” said Kennedy, a former public school teacher.  “Now, during the COVID-19 public health crisis, it is more important than ever that we have representatives in Washington fighting for the workers in our community who are risking their lives every day.”

Kennedy and her main rival, Brigid Callahan Harrison, have been competing for labor endorsements in the race to take on Rep. Jeff Van Drew (R-Dennis).

Harrison has swept building trades unions and the Unite Here Local 54 casino workers and is backed by the American Federation of Teachers, where she is a member.  Kennedy has the support of the Communications Workers of America and the New Jersey Education Association.

Kennedy’s plan includes: the right to collectively bargain, the right to high-paying jobs, the right to a secure retirement, the right to a safe workplace, the right to health care, the right to overtime pay, the right to equal pay for equal work, the right to balance work and family, and the right to benefits and legal protections.

“I know Amy will always be someone that workers in South Jersey can count on to fight for us,” said CWA Area Director Hetty Rosenstein. “Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for Brigid Harrison, who wants to cut the pensions and healthcare benefits of the essential workers who are protecting and serving all of us during this crisis.  No other Democratic candidate for Congress supports this plan.”

Marie Blistan, the NJEA president, said her union endorsed Kennedy because of her “commitment both to public schools and to the students and working families who rely on them.”

“Amy’s Workers Bill of Rights is a commitment to always put the rights and needs of working families first and to truly represent the public school employees in her community,” she said.

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