The Massachusetts Democratic Party’s 2017 Platform states a belief that every person has the right to live a full, meaningful life with equal access to opportunity, security, and inclusion. It states that there is a need to fight the regressive Republican agenda at home and in Washington. The Lowell Democratic City Committee believes in and supports this platform and will work to ensure that Lowell is a welcoming city where there is inclusiveness and opportunity for everyone.
The Lowell Democratic City Committee believes that these key local issues need to be supported:
- City Planning. Lowell needs mixed-use, smart-growth development that includes premium retail outlets, restaurants, housing, and state-of-the-art spaces for research and innovation. Development choices should be respectful and complementary to the neighborhood.
- Housing. The City needs to ensure that there is affordable, high-quality housing for all. We support an increase in the City’s affordable housing stock and continued investment in addressing homelessness in Lowell, in conjunction with the Hunger and Homelessness Commission and similar bodies.
- Transportation and Infrastructure. Our residents and visitors need a multi-modal transportation system, including affordable public transportation options, accommodations for bicycles with bike lanes, other people-powered vehicles, and safe walking areas. Specifically, we encourage investment in connecting the Bruce Freeman Trail from Crosspoint to the Concord Greenway and to the Gallagher Transportation Center and providing better pedestrian and bike access in the redesigned Lord Overpass to the downtown.
- Voter Participation. The City will be stronger when every resident has an equal and fair opportunity to participate in government. It is important to support all efforts to increase voter participation by ensuring that underrepresented communities are registered, educated, and mobilized, and that the City of Lowell conforms with the Voting Rights Act.
- Jobs. Family sustaining jobs that provide a living wage and foster strong economic equality are essential to the well-being of those living in Lowell. We promote investment in bringing well-paying jobs to Lowell that will create a sustainable economy and environment, and in developing programs that help support opportunities in business for all.
A. Single Payer. We support a single-payer healthcare system, and efforts to improve access to high quality healthcare for all who live in the City, including the expansion of the community health centers.
B. Opioid Crisis. To combat the deadly opioid crisis, the City must invest in proven addiction recovery and prevention services and offer immediate treatment to all who need it. These activities must be used to limit the number of those struggling with addiction from entering the prison system and should promote housing and job training for those in recovery.
C. Paid Family and Medical leave. We support policies that allow all employees to take job-protected paid leave to recover from a serious illness or injury, or to care for a new child or other family member, without employer retaliation.
7. Public Safety:
A. Violence and abuse. We support strong enforcement against hate crimes, child abuse, domestic violence, elder abuse, sexual abuse, and abuse against those with disabilities, in addition to strong intervention and child abuse prevention programs for youths and at-risk individuals. These efforts are an essential core to the values of the City of Lowell.
B. Policing. We support policing strategies in Lowell that promote public safety and crime reduction while protecting the civil rights of our residents. We believe that there must be clear consequences for the use of excessive force by police. The City should also ensure that funds are allocated for safety strategies that include education and support for community-based policing, which would be promoted through a pipeline for youth to the police academy. We also support community programming on unconscious bias, diversity, and inclusion that police could attend.
C. Immigration Status Reporting. We support the current policy of the Lowell Police Department not to give information regarding immigration status to ICE about residents who have not committed any crime.
A. pre-K-12. We support quality public pre-K-12 education for Lowell’s children with competitive salaries for teachers and staff.
B. Lowell High School. We support the renovation of Lowell’s high school into an up-to-date, 21st century facility. There must be a process to develop these plans that keeps an eye on the bottom line while ensuring quality. Additionally, we support developing a comprehensive maintenance plan for all Lowell schools to ensure smooth operation and an ideal learning environment for students.
C. Higher Education. We support the University of Massachusetts Lowell and the Middlesex Community College, and believe they are an asset to our community. We encourage collaboration between the City and these institutions.