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ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON BILL DE BLASIO

Bill de Blasio's Positions on Various Key Issues
(Posted September 2013
)

* Jobs:

  • De Blasio calls for “an economic policy that combats inequality,” lest New York City “become little more than a playground for the rich, where millions upon millions of New Yorkers struggle ... to keep their heads above water.”
  • Asserting that “the city is not providing sufficient assistance” to aspiring immigrant entrepreneurs, he advocates “greater outreach” to rectify that situation.
  • He is a strong supporter of living-wage laws.
  • He calls for all people employed in New York City to be entitled to a number of paid sick days each year.
  • He favors the awarding of more New York City contracts to minority- and women-owned business enterprises.

* Education:

  • De Blasio favors an increase in taxes on high earners, to raise the funds needed to “dramatically expand after-school programs for all middle-school students, and to create truly universal pre-K programs.”
  • He calls for reduced class sizes at all levels of education.
  • He seeks to “make free school lunch available to all public school children at most city schools,” so as to allow students “to eat free of charge and free of stigma.”

* Crime and Public Safety:

  • Charging that the law-enforcement practice known as “stop-and-frisk” disproportionately targets “people of color,” de Blasio advocates “legislation to end racial profiling.”
  • “A strong advocate for greater transparency and police accountability,” he calls for an Inspector General and a Civilian Complaint Review Board to monitor NYPD activities.
  • He recommends the creation of more taxpayer-funded after-school programs to “help keep kids off the streets” between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. each day, “the most dangerous hours for our youth”

* Affordable Housing:

  • Throughout his political career, de Blasio has promoted ever-increasing amounts of “affordable housing”—i.e., taxpayer subsidies to cover rental expenses for low-income people.
  • He believes that “when neighborhoods are rezoned,... developers should be required to build affordable housing for low- and middle-income families in return, a concept known as mandatory inclusionary zoning.”

* Immigration:

  • De Blasio advocates the enactment of national and state DREAM Act legislation, which would enable illegal immigrants who first came to the U.S. as minors to access federal and state financial aid for their post-secondary education; to attend college at the reduced tuition rates normally reserved for in-state legal residents; and to earn conditional permanent residency and a path to citizenship.
  • He favors a city-backed ID card that would “allow all residents—including undocumented immigrants—to access basic services like opening a bank account or signing an apartment lease.”
  • He calls for allowing illegals to have access to driver’s licenses and taxpayer-funded health care.

* Income and Food Security:

  • As a City Council member, de Blasio passed legislation that removed barriers to food stamp enrollment; the new rules allowed application submissions by alternate means and waived face-to-face interviews if they presented a hardship for the applicant. He also advanced legislation requiring the Human Resources Administration to provide language-assistance and translation services for non-English speakers applying for government benefits. 
  • As Public Advocate, he demanded that New York City discontinue its use of fingerprint imaging for food stamp applicants.
  • Today de Blasio laments that “too many families”—including children of “undocumented parents”—“don’t even know they qualify for assistance programs.” To rectify this, he calls for an expansion of “media and public outreach campaigns to increase participation in all income and food assistance programs.”

* Women:

  • Condemning what he characterizes as widespread “pay discrimination” against women, de Blasio maintains that, on average, employers in NYC “pa[y] women only 85 cents on every dollar earned by men.”
  • A strong supporter of Planned Parenthood as a “vital organization,” he pledges “to ensure that all women in New York City have access to quality reproductive health care.” For low-income women, such care would be subsidized by taxpayers.
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