Madam Speaker Quinn

Volume CVI, No. 1January, 2006

New York City Councilmember Christine Quinn (District #3) was nominated and elected to lead the New York City Council by her fellow Councilmembers on January 4.

Speaker Quinn has been a longtime friend of 802 and of the labor movement as a whole. She advocated for our musicians during some of our toughest negotiations including both the Broadway and Radio City Music Hall negotiations. A major proponent of creating more affordable housing and making employers more responsible for the health care needs of their employees, Speaker Quinn has also consistently stood up for the arts and entertainment community. Following is an excerpt from her acceptance speech:

“As Speaker I will be guided by principles that will make our government even more responsive to people’s needs and more effective for all New Yorkers. I am committed to being a five-borough Speaker… we work for you…we serve you…our job is to make your life better. It doesn’t matter where you live, this Council and I are here to answer your needs.

“The Mayor’s job is to focus on the needs of New Yorkers on a macro level from the top down…our job is to focus on their needs from the bottom up.

“Yet, our goals and the mayor’s goals are the same…I believe that our job, first and foremost, is to work with the Mayor – whatever his party affiliation – to make the City a better place.

“And we must work together to help the millions of working class people for whom the City has become simply unaffordable. …We face a housing crisis that is pricing too many tenants and homeowners out of their neighborhoods. It is unacceptable that people who work here and who want to live and raise a family here cannot afford to do so. It is our job to help change that.

“And, most importantly, we must work together improve the lives of the least fortunate. To give everyone the opportunity to have a job that offers dignity and respect…and that pays a living wage… to make the delivery of social services more effective… to make our public hospitals better…and to offer smarter preventive care for our children.

“To accomplish these goals, the City Council must become an incubator of big ideas…the creator of innovative policies that help people across the economic spectrum and across the City. We will look to cities and states throughout the country and to neighborhoods and communities throughout New York for the smartest solutions to people’s everyday problems.

“Let me say that I am incredibly proud that in the most diverse City in the world, that diversity is seen as a strength – not an impediment. Thank you for your support…thank you for your trust…I won’t let you down.”