The COVID-19 pandemic has not only demonstrated many of the deep economic inequities in Maryland – it has also exacerbated the situation, with disparate impacts on historically marginalized and disadvantaged populations. Too often, women – especially women of color – have been left out of Maryland’s economic progress and denied access to critical opportunities, basic human rights, and an equitable living wage. As a state, we cannot successfully achieve economic progress or leadership without recognizing and prioritizing the need for equitable economic policy for all Marylanders. A King-Siri administration will work to undo the current inequity that is steeped into the system and build a strong, equitable economy.
The King-Siri Agenda for Building Women’s Economic Equity includes four key priorities:
- Making Maryland the first state in the nation to close the wage gap
- Moving aggressively to increase the minimum wage, especially for tipped workers.
- Using state purchasing and regulatory power to enact higher wages in sectors with predominantly female workforces.
- Boosting pathways to and participation by women in higher-paid sectors and occupations.
- Supporting collective bargaining and unionization.
- Ensuring safe and accessible workplaces
- Expanding and strengthening legal protections on sexual harassment.
- Working to make Maryland first in the nation in providing quality, accessible and affordable childcare for all.
- Working to make Maryland a leader, not a trailer, in paid family leave.
- Expand the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act to include private employers.
- Creating equitable access to economic opportunity
- Strengthening state-run programs that provide financial assistance to families in need.
- Create a new generation of women entrepreneurs and investors to unleash Maryland’s creative economic potential.
- Establish a state-level fund to expand the capital of Community Development Financial Institutions.
- Expanding the Earned Income Tax Credit.
- Enacting a universal child tax credit.
- Creating a Universal Baby Bonds Program.
- Prioritizing quality of life and economic dignity
- Reducing regulatory barriers for housing construction.
- Investing robustly in social and affordable housing.
- Expanding rental assistance.
- Fully funding access to counsel in eviction cases.
- Ending discrimination against formerly incarcerated individuals and survivors.
- Extending CHIP to all Maryland children and expecting mothers.
- Expanding support for expecting and new mothers.
- Ensuring nutritional access for all, especially low-income communities
By working towards economic equity for women, we can create a successful, prosperous future for every Marylander.