by Chris Carroll and Maria DiPasquale
As part of our work supporting musicians and their ability to create an artistically fulfilling and economically viable career, Local 802 works to ensure that our city government is led and represented by people who align with our priorities and values. During election years, this work includes engaging candidates and discussing their views, priorities and values, while also determining whether or not they are candidates who support our legislative agenda. On Sept. 12, voters cast their ballots in New York City primaries for mayor, comptroller, public advocate, borough president, city council and various other races, and Local 802 supported candidates fared extremely well.
OPEN SEAT ELECTIONS
Early this spring, our union identified a number of City Council districts that were being vacated by their current representatives as a priority for our agenda, largely due to the amount of music performed in these districts and the number of musicians who call these districts home. We were extraordinarily proud to support Carlina Rivera (District 2), Keith Powers (District 4), Marjorie Velazquez (District 13) and Justin Brannan (District 43), all of whom have established themselves as progressive leaders and advocates for their communities. They have also shown strong commitment to the arts and support for our agenda to raise the wage floor for all musicians. Ms. Rivera, Mr. Powers and Mr. Brannan won their primary races and are now positioning themselves for the Nov. 7 general election.
INCUMBENTS AND CHALLENGERS
This year, the majority of seats for office were held by incumbents. We were proud to be among the first unions to endorse Mayor Bill de Blasio for a second term in office, due to his progressive agenda, pre-k program and support for the arts. We were also extremely proud to endorse Councilmember Corey Johnson of District 3, Councilmember Helen Rosenthal of District 6, Councilmember Mark Levine of District 7, Councilmember Ydanis Rodriguez of District 10, Councilmember Ritchie Torres of District 15, Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer of District 26, Councilmember Elizabeth Crowley of District 30, Councilmember Rafael Espinal of District 37 and Councilmember Carlos Menchaca of District 38, all of whom won their primaries and are on the ballot for the general election in November. These candidates have all proven themselves to be hard-working allies of the labor and arts communities during their time in office, and we look forward to another four years of working together to ensure that musicians are treated fairly across New York City.
The general election is Nov. 7, and we will continue to work with these leaders to ensure that our elected representatives support performers and the role that the arts play in our society, while simultaneously working to make sure New Yorkers understand the dangers of a constitutional convention and vote “no.” (To vote on Nov. 7, you must be registered by Oct. 12.)
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