I – THE ECONOMIC BILL OF RIGHTS
Our country cannot truly move forward until the roots of inequality are pulled up, and the seeds of a new, healthier economy are planted. Thus, the Green New Deal begins with an Economic Bill of Rights that ensures all citizens: 1. The right to employment through a Full Employment Program that will create 25 million jobs by implementing a nationally funded, but locally controlled direct employment initiative replacing unemployment offices with local employment offices offering public sector jobs which are “stored” in job banks in order to take up any slack in private sector employment.
- Local communities will use a process of broad stakeholder input and democratic decision making to fairly implement these programs.
- Pay-to-play prohibitions will ensure that campaign contributions or lobbying favors do not impact decision-making.
- We will end unemployment in America once and for all by guaranteeing a job at a living wage for every American willing and able to work.
Worker’s rights including the right to a living wage, to a safe workplace, to fair trade, and to organize a union at work without fear of firing or reprisal.
- The right to quality health care which will be achieved through a single-payer Medicare-for-All program.
- The right to a tuition-free, quality, federally funded, local controlled public education system from preschool through college. We will also forgive student loan debt from the current era of unaffordable college education.
5. The right to decent affordable housing, including an immediate halt to all foreclosures and evictions. We will:
- create a federal bank with local branches to take over homes with distressed mortgages and either restructure the mortgages to affordable levels, or if the occupants cannot afford a mortgage, rent homes to the occupants;
- expand rental and home ownership assistance;
- create ample public housing; and,
- offer capital grants to non-profit developers of affordable housing until all people can obtain decent housing at no more than 25% of their income.
6. The right to accessible and affordable utilities – heat, electricity, phone, internet, and public transportation – through democratically run, publicly owned utilities that operate at cost, not for profit.
7. The right to fair taxation that’s distributed in proportion to ability to pay. In addition, corporate tax subsidies will be made transparent by detailing them in public budgets where they can be scrutinized, not hidden as tax breaks.
Photo below: Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign.