As the son of a single mother in Vineland, NJ, I know firsthand that too many families are within one missed paycheck of extreme hardship – like my mom and I were when a sickness led to her layoff and our eventual homelessness. We can’t allow our families to continue to work tirelessly with so little to show for it. As your Congressman, I’ll be committed to investing in our state’s future in order to ease this burden and instead help South Jersey families flourish. One significant step in the right direction is advancing a $15 an hour federal minimum wage, and enshrining union and workers’ rights. I have seen firsthand how devastating low wages are to family well-being. We must do better.
South Jersey has great promise and great resources. Our shore is a symbol of the region’s great potential despite the decade’s past downturn. Innovation is key to identifying new industries like clean energy and off-shore wind farms that have the potential to create more jobs – and help mitigate the devastating effects of climate change at the same time, which our shoreline industries continue to suffer from. Let’s create a welcoming business environment for these clean energy ventures and other new innovative industries, so we can get South Jerseyans back to work.
Additionally, approving a robust infrastructure plan must be a priority in Congress. Not only would it create jobs in the region, but it would improve our bridge, roads, and thoroughfares, making New Jersey a better place for companies and startups – who rely on robust transportation networks to support commerce – to locate.
And perhaps most importantly, we must ensure access to certificate programs and vocational training for every Jersey resident; before South Jersey residents can take advantage of burgeoning industries like clean energy, they must receive the training they need to excel – and this training must be affordable and accessible for everyone.
There is much work to be done, but South Jerseyans have always rolled their sleeves up to get results. I will do the same as your Congressman to ensure our communities have the opportunities we deserve.