Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) today joined with President Clinton, Vice President Gore and Congressional Democrats for the unveiling of the Families First Agenda. "By committing the budget surplus to saving Social Security, expanding access to Medicare, improving the education of our children, and protecting the environment we are sending a positive message to the American people about our values and our commitment to fiscal responsibility and deficit reduction," Pelosi said.
Other key initiatives in the agenda include raising the minimum wage and enforcing fair pay. "A living wage and pay equity are central to addressing the issue of economic justice along with providing economic opportunity," Pelosi said. Democrats propose a $1 increase in the minimum wage over the next two years and an Equal Pay Initiative which would begin to address the inequities in wages earned by women when compared to men. "Unless we take basic steps to remedy inequities in the workplace we make it difficult for working families to achieve the American dream," Pelosi said.
Democrats will, again, pursue a Patients' Bill of Rights which protects patients from unfair treatment by their health insurance provider and provides an enforceable recourse should their insurance provider not act in their best interest. "The Democratic plan represents real reform to the nation's managed care system, restoring the priority of the patient-doctor relationship and putting a patient's health care in the hands of a MD not a CPA," Pelosi said.
In addition to Saving Social Security, Strengthening Medicare, Raising the Minimum Wage, Modernizing Schools and protecting Patients' Rights, the Families First Agenda also includes initiatives to:
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