As we look at Gov. Ned Lamont’s proposed budget, it’s evident that the needs of the working poor and the middle class were not a priority. How can we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and its ensuing economic harm on the working people of Connecticut with austerity measures and accounting tricks? How can we acknowledge the sacrifice of public and private frontline workers who keep providing services for the general public at great risk for sparse economic reward? How can we support those who lost their jobs or who have no real option of returning to the workforce due to the virus?
While the state sits on a surplus of millions of dollars to protect a rainy day fund, a torrent of hurt is pouring on Black, Brown and White working people. The governor’s proposal fails to meet equity concerns in public education, health care and mental health services, and even preys on
the fixed income of retirees. The governor’s proposal rests on state workers assuming no improvements on wages and benefits. The governor’s budget cuts state funding for essential services with the hope of plugging those holes down the line with unreliable federal funding streams that have yet to be approved in Congress. And the governor refuses to tax billionaires
and the ultra-wealthy who made over $3.6 billion in windfall profits during the pandemic.
It’s a shame that the priorities of working people are neglected by this budget proposal. It’s a shame that Gov. Lamont has failed to see the pain that working people have suffered. It’s a shame to hear a governor describe a “mansion tax” as a “broad-based tax” on middle income earners. It’s a shame to see the governor double down on cutting taxes for wealthy billionaires and millionaires, while nickel-and-diming nursing home workers, personal care attendants and retired education staff. At District 1199, our death toll is up to 22 members while caring for others during the pandemic, only to serve as sacrificial lambs to the whims of billionaire estates.
It’s a shame that a wealthy state like Connecticut has decided to prolong racial segregation and to widen wealth inequality at a time when working people have voted at the polls to change the way things are.
For Friday, February 12, 2021
Contact: Pedro Zayas, firstname.lastname@example.org , 860-830-2478