John grew up in a blue-collar family, in a blue-collar neighborhood. He learned from an early age the challenges of paying bills and putting food on the table, and he’s never forgotten how difficult these experiences were for his family.
John is on a mission to build an economy that works for families like his own growing up, not just the top 1%. To him, that work starts by supporting our working families, strengthening our unions, and increasing economic opportunity.
Supporting Our Families
John has always put families first. As CT Senate Pro Tem, he authored the nation’s first family and medical leave bill and sponsored an agenda focused specifically on helping Connecticut’s families.
During his time in Congress, John has continued to get real results for our working families. John recently helped pass the Child Tax Credit, one of the biggest investments in working families in American history. Introduced by CT’s own Rosa DeLauro, this tax cut benefits over 350,000 Connecticut families, over 115,000 families in the First Congressional District, and will help lift more than 8,000 children in the First District out of poverty.
Now, John is working closely with Speaker Pelosi and President Biden to build on this historic achievement with investments in affordable child care, universal pre-K, and paid family leave.
These initiatives are essential to strengthening our workforce and ensuring no one has to choose between their jobs and their family. Most importantly, they are essential to our kids, who will receive critical early education and spend more of their formative moments with their parents.
Strengthening Our Unions
Fighting for workers and organized labor is personal to John. At a young age, his godfather, John Shaughnessy Jr., then President of Connecticut Telephone Workers’ Union, instilled in him a powerful understanding of their importance.
John has worked hand in hand with unions ever since, achieving landmark victories for workers. Just this past year, he helped save union pension plans from financial collapse, winning the years long battle to pass the Butch Lewis Act as part of the American Rescue Plan. Workers across the country will retire with the benefits they spent their lives earning because of this critical achievement. He also teamed up with labor groups and advocates to reverse harmful COVID relief restrictions and give unions access to critical funding as part of the American Rescue Plan.
The Covid pandemic has underscored and emphasized the importance of unions. It has also lit a fire under union membership, with thousands of workers striking for better pay and conditions right now.
Workers are calling for change, and John is right there with them in Congress. He won’t rest until Congress has passed the PRO Act and protected the right to organize for generations to come.
Increasing Economic Opportunity
Every American should have access to the opportunities and the education needed to realize the American dream. Throughout his time in Congress, John has worked to expand economic opportunity and level the economic playing field.
In Hartford, his efforts have centered around getting results for the city’s North End. Decades of isolation and discrimination, a lack of investment, and various other factors have made the North End one of the poorest zip-codes in the country. John has been fighting tirelessly to change that, helping the neighborhood become designated as a federal “Promise Zone”, which gives it exclusive access to grants and federal support.
John was also the first to propose a bold solution to reconnect the North End to the rest of the city; a solution that will now become reality thanks to the bipartisan infrastructure bill! Reconnecting the North End to the rest of the city will open the doors of economic opportunity in the neighborhood and correct the past mistakes of Connecticut’s highway planning.
These are transformative steps forward, not just for the North End, but for all of Connecticut. John will continue to work with community leaders across the state to build on these results and further expand economic opportunity.
At the national-level, John is also fighting to raise the minimum wage, lower the out of control costs of secondary education, expand access to high speed internet, and more. These bold solutions are vital to ensuring every American has a fair chance at success.