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April 8, 2016
Please feel free to contact me with any concerns or opinions you might
Office Phone: (608) 266-7505
Toll-free Phone: (800) 361-5487
P.O. Box 7882
Madison, WI 53707
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neighbors and being involved in our community is of the utmost
importance. Some community events that might be of interest to you and
your family are listed below.
Social Media Awareness Presentation for Parents
Date: Wednesday, April 13, 2016, from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m
Location: Oak Creek
Description: Come learn about how to keep your child safe on
social media from the Wisconsin Department of Justice and Helen Wasmer.
Snacks and child care will be provided through Oak Creek High Schools
National Honors Society and the West Middle School Student Council.CLICK
HERE for more information.
Oak Creek West Middle School
7630 South 10th St
Oak Creek, WI 53154
St. Ann Center Indoor Market
Date: Saturdays in April from 9 a.m to p.m.
Description: Support the St. Ann Center for Intergenerational
Care by enjoying fresh produce, crafts, and more. The market will have
live music and free coffee. Purchases made at the event will benefit
local vendors and the children and adults cared for at St. Ann.
CLICK HERE for more information.
St. Ann Center for
2801 E Morgan Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53207
íSe fue la luz! A Night Under the Caribbean Sky at the UWM
Date: Fridays now through May 6, 2016, from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Description: Bring your kids to hear youth drummers from Proyecto
Bembe, a local nonprofit music education group, as they transform the
UWM Planetarium into a Caribbean Island. The Center for Latin American
and Caribbean Studies invites you to enjoy indoor star gazing and live
music. Tickets are $3 and are available 30 minutes before the shows
more information, CLICK HERE.
UWM Manfred Olson Planetarium
1900 E Kenwood Blvd.
Milwaukee, WI 53211
Muir: An Exhibit Celebrating the Centennial of the National Park Service
Date: Saturday April 20, 2016, at Noon
Location: Oak Creek
Description: Stop by the Oak Creek Public Library to see an
exhibit honoring John Muir in celebration of the centennial of the
National Park Service. The free exhibit will be on display Saturday
April 12 through Friday April 25. On Saturday April 20, 2016 there will
be a talk and book discussion on the life of John Muir. The first 28
people to register for the event will receive a free copy of a book on
John Muir, or the environmental history of Wisconsin. To register, call
HERE for more information.
Oak Creek Public
8040 S. 6th St.
Oak Creek, WI 53154
Dear Wisconsin Neighbor,
Welcome back! As you may know, per Wisconsin State Statute, the Larson
Report was halted until April 5, Election Day for the Spring Primary. I
am honored to continue serving as your Senator, and work to better our
community and state.
This edition of the Larson Report discusses the photo ID requirement for
voting and some of the problems it caused on Election Day.
Additionally, the 2015-2016
Legislative Session recently concluded. Therefore, this report will be an in-depth look at bills that were pushed
My Democratic colleagues and I fought
hard to restore Wisconsin's shared values. We offered an exciting vision
for Wisconsin, that was largely ignored by the Republicans in control. I
want to thank all of the hardworking advocates, like you, who continued to
contact me to express your views and concerns.
State Senator, District 7
Voting Barriers and
restrictive photo ID law that requires an ID be presented in order to
cast a vote on Election Day was in effect on Tuesday, April 5 for the
Spring Primary, the first major election since the law was upheld by the
DMV System Crashed Days Before
Many willing and motivated voters were attempting to comply with the
newly implemented law, and take the necessary steps to have their voices
heard, but were instead turned away from Division of Motor Vehicles
(DMV) offices while trying obtain an ID. That's because on the last day
for in-person absentee voting, and merely two business days before
Election Day, DMV locations across the state mysteriously lost their
ability to issue IDs.
After learning about the system
shutdown, legislative Democrats quickly acted and called for an
emergency extension of DMV location hours as well as a lift on the ID
requirement for Tuesday's election.
Due to the outage not being
remedied in a reasonable timeframe, and public concerns that the
integrity of our elections may be further diminished, some counties
offered a two hour extension of Saturday service hours. Unfortunately,
there was almost no effort made by the Walker administration to make the
public aware of the limited extension. Disturbingly, our demands for a
waiver of the voter ID requirement for Tuesday's election were ignored
View the letter sent to Governor Walker, Secretary Neitzel and
Secretary Gottlieb, here.
Former State Legislator, Former
Republican Staffer Admit Voter Disenfranchisement
My Democratic colleagues and I have harshly criticized the voter
suppression law as it unfairly disenfranchises minority, elderly, and
student voters. In fact, a Wisconsin congressman, who was a Republican
state legislator at the time the restrictive voter ID requirement was
passed, essentially admitted to this disenfranchisement in a recent
interview. Voters who are adversely affected by the requirement tend to
lean Democratic. When asked about how GOP presidential candidates would
fair in Wisconsin, Congressman Glenn Grothman alluded that the photo ID
requirements would lend a helpful hand to the Republican candidates. In
addition, a former senior Republican legislative staffer declared he
left the party entirely, citing the ID restriction law as being the
Voting Problems on College
Early reports about how the law impacted voters on April 5 suggest that
college student voters were faced with confusion and long lines at the
polls. Out-of-state IDs and most campus-issued IDs are not accepted as valid forms of
identification for voting purposes under the law (Wisconsin's ID requirements are some of
the most restrictive in the country). This means that students had to
wait in line to get a special ID for voting, before they were able to
get in a different line to cast their vote.
Disturbingly, a member of the
League of Women Voters said she observed multiple students at Marquette
leave without voting because of the long lines. She told the Nation,
said things like, 'You talk about voter disenfranchisement, this is what
happened here,' and 'I skipped one class, I can't skip another.'"
Additionally, there were still 240 students
waiting in line at the university to vote when the polls closed at 8
p.m. Katherine Murray, a senior, was the last to vote at 9:45, nearly
two hours after the polls closed.
Click here to read a Huffington Post article with stories
from Wisconsinites who encountered challenges when trying to comply
with the law.
While Republicans in the
Legislature continue to shred the fabric of our democracy and tear apart
our tradition of good-government, Democrats remain committed to
protecting our individual freedoms and constitutional rights. Upholding
our tradition of fair and free elections has historically been the
Wisconsin way, and I will continue to fight for our shared values -- but
I need your help. Did you observe voter disenfranchisement at the polls,
or experience it personally? If so, please share your story with me. In
an era of regressive politics, we must all work together to change the
direction of our state.
Click here to share your story.
2015-16 Session Recap:
Forcing Corruption and Collusion Into Wisconsin
session was a betrayal of Wisconsin's shared values, eclipsed with
special interest paybacks that benefit corporations and the wealthy,
leaving our already struggling families behind.
In fact, job numbers released in February show that our state continues
to trail behind our Midwest neighbors, and the rest of the nation.
What's more, recently unveiled studies show that in the last couple
years Wisconsin poverty rates hit the highest level in 30 years.
Click here to read an article about poverty in Wisconsin.
These are the facts. Unfortunately,
real, hardworking Wisconsin families are the faces behind the
statistics. They are the ones forced to struggle in the failed Walker
and legislative GOP economy. These are citizens in our state who are
kept awake at night worried that their job may be the next one to be
shipped out of the state. These are our neighbors who do not know if
they are able to pay their rent or mortgages next month because their
wages remain stagnant. These are our young adults who face a lifetime of
debt if they pursue a higher education. These are our children who are
not getting the education they deserve because their schools are
intentionally under-funded by state Republican leaders.
Despite having once been a national
leader in fostering transparency and accountability in our government,
Republicans continued the same pattern of politicization and special interest
favoritism that has been pushed in Wisconsin over the past five years.
Republicans have intentionally allowed our garden of good-government to
be overgrown by weeds, and the dark cloud of corruption looming over
Wisconsin is blocking the sunshine of transparency.
Here's a recap of the some of
the ways Walker and legislative Republicans betrayed Wisconsin's values
of open and honest government:
- Politicizing the Government Accountability
(2015 Wisconsin Act 118) -- Republicans in control of the
Legislature passed a bill that replaces a diligent and respected
group of nonpartisan judges who faithfully enforced state law and
regulated ethical standards in public office with a partisan group
who will be focused on political gain and pain.
- Allowing an avalanche of special interest money to flow to
(2015 Wisconsin Act 117) -- Republicans blew up our
campaign finance laws, which will bury Wisconsin's principles and
values under an avalanche of dark money and allow for unlimited
funds to funnel into local campaigns. Shockingly, these campaigns
will not need to
report where they get their money and how it is spent. In fact, for
the first time in state law, unlimited money from
corporations can now be given to political parties and legislative
- Protecting Corrupt
Politicians from Prosecution
(2015 Wisconsin Act 64) --
In addition to allowing more money into local campaigns, Republicans
passed a bill that makes it harder to investigate bribery of public
office holders or employees and makes violations of campaign finance
laws, which only politicians and their donors can commit, exempt
from John Doe investigations.
Session Recap: The
Fight to Keep Public Water Public
This session, Walker and legislative
Republicans made every attempt to side with corporate polluters
over investing in a healthy environment. However, Wisconsinites were not fooled by the
irresponsible direction the current administration and legislative
Republicans tried taking our state, proving the misdirected priorities
and failed policies of the GOP are not going unnoticed by our neighbors.
Over the past few months, people across Wisconsin turned their outrage
over one of the bad GOP schemes into action. After the public learned
about a bill to make it easier to privatize our water systems, referred
to as the Flint Water Bill, they organized and pushed back.
This bill, Assembly Bill (AB) 554, attempted to lower the barriers that
out-of-state companies face when purchasing the water services of
Wisconsin municipalities. Ultimately, the bill would have made it harder
for citizens to stop the sale of their public water utilities to profit
seekers. Wisconsinites were gravely concerned with this shortsighted
effort to sell off our water supplies, because doing so often leads to
lower oversight and less accountability. Stripping away local water
control led to the tragedies in Flint, Michigan.
After being quietly ushered through the state Assembly, public outrage
ballooned as the the Senate Committee on Workforce Development, Public
Works, and Military Affairs decided to schedule AB 554 for a vote.
Fresh water advocates quickly
mobilized and called, emailed, and wrote committee members and their own
legislators to let them know that they were vehemently opposed to this
destructive water privatization attempt. To amplify the voices of my
fellow concerned neighbors, I created an online petition, which was
signed by around 1000 Wisconsinites -- like you -- in just a week.
In February, Republicans attempted
to ignore the outrage coming from all over the state, and scheduled
Assembly Bill 554 for a vote in the full Senate -- the last step needed
in order for the bill to go to the governor for signature into law.
Wisconsinites tirelessly and passionately pushed back once again. Due to
the widespread outrage from statewide organizations and the public,
Senate Republicans were forced to abandon ship and took the unusual
course of pulling the bill from the calendar. This bill was not
scheduled thereafter, and failed to pass this session as a result.
At a time when we are seeing regressive policies being pushed and passed
and where our state is being sold to the highest bidder, this type of
successful grassroots victory is a huge win for Wisconsinites.
Click here for a Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article about the bill.
As Governor Walker and legislative
Republicans continue to cut resources from our local communities, they
are being forced to make damaging decisions to make up for the
shortfalls. Turning over public goods for private profit may provide
short-term cash, but it also cuts out the public from future decisions.
I'm opposed to these kinds of takeovers and it is clear that the
majority of Wisconsinites are too. We all have a right to clean, safe
Groundwater & High Capacity
Imagine a law that would let a corporation siphon away the water that
provides your family's drinking water, or the water that you need to
grow your garden. Now, imagine that this corporation's greedy thirst could
be protected by law, forever. It sounds like a bad, low budget movie,
unfortunately this is exactly what we all faced with Senate Bill (SB)
239 and its Assembly companion, Assembly Bill (AB) 874. SB 239/AB 874 would have granted "forever permits," allowing heavy water
users to continue sucking water from the ground, regardless of
environmental damage. Water is something that we all share, and the need
for comprehensive safeguards has continued to grow. The Senate and
Assembly each passed their version of the bill, but were unable to pass
an identical bill before GOP leaders abruptly concluded session.
This means that this bill did not become law this session. This is a bill that will be on my radar for next session,
which begins in January 2017, and I will be
sure to keep you updated.
Devaluing Our Students and Schools
Historically, Wisconsinites have taken great pride in supporting
their local, neighborhood schools. Underinvesting in education causes
our schools, teachers, and -- most importantly -- our students to
struggle. For too long, Governor Walker and legislative Republicans have
intentionally passed legislation that cripples our local schools,
leaving them without the resources needed to repair and maintain their
facilities, provide adequate services for students with special needs,
keep class sizes small, as well as other vital needs that foster growth
and success in our students. This irresponsible disinvestment in our
schools will have costly consequences for generations to come.
Continuing to Strip
Resources Away From Neighborhood Schools
Communities across Wisconsin are continuing to see the negative
consequences of stripping resources from our traditional
neighborhood schools and expanding unaccountable, for-profit voucher
schools. In fact, this expansion has resulted in an overall increase of our
public money being spent on vouchers to $18.3 million during the
2015-2016 school year. In the 7th Senate District alone (excluding the
city of Milwaukee), we have seen $171,860 diverted away from our public
schools and funneled into private institutions. This weakens our schools
and limits their ability to provide all of our children with equal
access to a quality education.
Harming Higher Education
Since the passage of the last Walker budget, our university
system is scrambling to try to find ways to deal with the $250 million
cut seen across the UW System. This requires flexibility and innovation on
the part of administrators, as well as student leaders, and I have been
proud to see the cooperation throughout the UW System.
Unfortunately, however, we are starting to see the consequences these
cuts are having on our higher education institutions. Recently,
UW-Milwaukee announced that the Center for Urban Initiatives and
Research (CUIR) will close its doors on June 30. This closure came just
weeks after UWM Chancellor Mark Mone warned that the university would
have to slash budgets due to UWM's portion of the massive defunding; a
historic $30 million hit to their budget. In the Center's 40 year history they have
worked to foster growth and progress right here in Milwaukee; with
countless partnerships and community-based initiatives, CUIR worked
within our city to achieve a community where all residents have access
to a high quality of life.
The immense accomplishments and progress made by UW-Milwaukee, as well
as other Wisconsin system schools, continue to be jeopardized by the
irresponsible, unnecessary, and senseless $250 million cut.
As these massive cuts begin to
cripple campus budgets, we will continue to see the elimination of
programming and the loss of talented UW teaching staff. As such, it is
important now more than ever to hear directly from UW chancellors about
the negative implications the cut has had on their campuses. Unfortunately, we are seeing the
opposite take place.
In fact, in an apparent attempt to dodge public outrage and shield the governor from
criticism over the damage done to our historically world-class system,
the Walker-appointed Board of Regents will no longer be having
university chancellors publicly talk with them about the impact the historic cuts have had on their campuses
at their scheduled meeting in April. It smells of political
While chancellors may be intimidated into silence and while the political appointees on the Board of Regents
have turned their back on students, I will continue to
work with education leaders, as well as willing legislators, to find a
solution to the gaping hole in UW funding.
Crippling Student Debt
Despite having real solutions for current and future college
students, such as passing the Higher Ed, Lower Debt Act that allows
graduates to refinance their student loans, similar to a car or
home loan, Republicans ignored the crippling debt so many Wisconsinites
face. Their misguided attempt at addressing this crisis involves sending
a letter to students telling them how much money they are going to owe
upon graduation, increasing unpaid internships, and giving a small
amount of cash to students (less than $500) in very limited
None of these barebones bills will meaningfully address our student debt
crisis. We have an obligation to ensure Wisconsin graduates aren't
crippled by student debt. Simply telling them how expensive their
monthly bill will be after graduation does absolutely nothing to make
college affordable or prevent talented students from being priced out of
a higher education. Wisconsin ranked third in the nation for the highest
amount of student loan debt, leaving over 70% of our students graduating
with an average of $29,000 in debt, Under the governor and Republican
plan, those currently financially crippled by student debt are ignored.
Betraying Wisconsin Workers
Hardworking Wisconsinites are
struggling under the failed policies of the governor and his Republican
allies in the Legislature. Legislation passed this session further chips
away at worker protections and standards. Unfortunately, Republicans did
nothing to ensure our neighbors can earn fair wages they are able
to support a family with. Below are some of the rights stripped away
from workers this session.
Eliminating Worker Freedom --
(2015 Wisconsin Act 1)
Wisconsinites deserve a state that is going to protect their wages and
safety. Unfortunately, legislative Republicans and Governor Walker seem
to be working for their special interest friends, rather than the
average Wisconsinite. This was shown with the shameful introduction of
so-called "Right-to-work" (RTW) legislation. States with RTW
laws have lower worker wages, diminished worker health and safety, and,
at the same time, increased poverty and workplace fatalities.
Effort to Lower Wages --
(2015 Wisconsin Act 201)
Under Wisconsin's prevailing wage
law, we have the third most productive construction workers in the
country and the best in the Midwest in terms of our workers getting
things done right and on time. Prevailing wage laws ensure we have
well-trained, skilled workers, who give the public the best deal by doing high-quality work, efficiently. Despite
it being crystal clear that Wisconsin workers and businesses do not
support dismantling more protections for Wisconsin's middle class, a
provision to diminish our prevailing wage laws was slipped into the
Overhauling Civil Service
Protections -- (2015 Wisconsin Act 58)
Wisconsin's civil service protections date back over 100 years -- first
enacted in 1905. Like many of our Progressive Era policies, it served as
a national model for good government. Unfortunately, the attack on civil
service protections was another misguided Republican priority pushed
Having strong civil service laws is not only good for state workers, by
making sure they are not pressured to perform favors for politicians or
contribute to campaigns, but also for citizens as it keeps our
government clean and prevents cronyism.
2015 Wisconsin Act 58 removes neutral entrance exams for new job
applicants and replaces them with a biased resume-based system, and
shifts significant hiring authority to Walker political appointees.
Notably, before the civil service bill
passed, it was unveiled that the example used by
Republicans to demonstrate a "tough-to-fire" situation concerning
employee misconduct was untruthful and nothing more than another Walker
administration failure. Even though their lie was revealed, Republicans
still forced through the bill, putting our state on path of
Being Reckless With Our Health Care
As a state legislator,
I stand on the side of best practices that promote healthy communities,
save state resources, and give all Wisconsinites an opportunity to
receive basic health care services at a rate that is affordable.
Investing in the health and wellbeing of our neighbors does not solely
benefit people individually, but also impacts our community as a whole.
Children must be healthy to be ready to learn, workers must be healthy
in order to work efficiently, and businesses need healthy workers in
order to make profits. Therefore, health care must be part of the
conversation of moving Wisconsin forward.
Putting Politics over People by Rejecting Federal Health Care
Legislative Republicans and Governor Walker have made it clear, time
and time again, that they are not committed to our moral responsibility of ensuring access to
basic health care -- even if it means saving the state money. For
instance, by rejecting federal funding for BadgerCare, the most-recent
state budget limited health care access and added $360 million of
additional costs to state taxpayers. Throughout the remainder of the
legislative session, Republican leaders continued to ignore calls by
Democratic legislators and the public by continuing to leave federal
money to expand BadgerCare on the table.
Banning Access to Abortion
-- (2015 Wisconsin Act 56)
Not every pregnancy ends as
a woman and her family hopes, and when situations involving severe fetal
abnormalities or serious risks to the woman are discovered (usually at
the 20 week ultrasound) it is important for a woman to have the freedom
to make private, personal decisions with her family and doctor about how
to handle a medically complex, even dangerous, pregnancy.
These are often very wanted pregnancies that have gone tragically wrong.
Even so, Republicans recklessly pushed through legislation that
contained medically inaccurate information and banned and criminalized
abortions after 20 weeks.
Women's Health Providers -- (2015 Wisconsin Act 151 & 152)
Providing women in Wisconsin an opportunity to seek preventive care,
regardless of race, ethnicity, or economic status must be a priority in
our state. As such, Planned Parenthood is the largest nonprofit
reproductive health care provider of its kind in Wisconsin. Each year,
they serve more than 60,000 women and men. Notably, the majority of
patients served by Planned Parenthood consider them to be their primary
care provider. In many counties, they are often the only option for
Despite the lifesaving services, including blood pressure evaluations
and breast exams, that Planned Parenthood provides Wisconsin women,
Walker and legislative Republicans chose to pass legislation that
attempts to block family planning providers in Wisconsin from receiving
federal funding for
providing reproductive care to those who may not otherwise have access
to such services.
Vision for Wisconsin
Democrats believe in supporting Wisconsin families. After years of
Republican policies that have subsidized corporate spending, while at
the same time chipping away at protections for workers, it is time to
get Wisconsin back on track by eliminating barriers to economic freedom
Democrats have introduced ideas that will move Wisconsin
forward, such as:
- Making Childcare Affordable
-- Rising childcare costs are a major concern for families across
the states. Wisconsin has been ranked as one of the 10 least
affordable states for childcare and it is time we address this
burden on working families. Democrats have introduced a bill that
would provide an income tax credit to alleviate the cost of
childcare and allow parents to pursue their careers.
- Earned Sick Days --
Wisconsin's working families should have the right to take a day
away from work to get the medical care they need, to care for a sick
child, or to assist an ill parent. The Earned Sick Days Act would
provided economic security for Wisconsin's working families by
allowing workers to earn up to nine paid sick days each year.
Workers at businesses with fewer than 10 employees would earn up to
five sick days each year.
- Strengthening Family
Medical Leave -- No one should face the impossible choice
between their health or caring for
a new child or sick family members and their paycheck. Democrats have introduced the
Wisconsin Family Medical Leave Insurance Act, which is an expansion
of the Wisconsin Family Medical Leave Act. The bill allows employees
to take earned, paid family leave to care for eligible family
- Ensuring a Fair Wage --
Far too many Wisconsin working families aren't making enough to make
ends meet, much less get ahead. Democrats have introduced a bill to
raise minimum wage to $15. The bill would also index the minimum
wage rate with inflation after 2020. Raising the minimum wage for
hardworking Wisconsin families is a win-win, generating business for
our economy and our local businesses, and it reopens the door to
getting into the middle class. Click here to
read an op-ed I wrote for the Wisconsin State Journal regarding
raising the minimum wage.
- Addressing Wage Theft
-- Our friends and family deserve to receive fair payment for the hours
they work. American workers lose billions to wage theft, which
includes not receiving overtime pay or being forced to work off the
clock. Democrats introduced the Wage Theft Protection Act, which
makes several changes that would help combat wage theft, including
requiring employer disclosure of rate of pay and other working
conditions at the time of hire and annually thereafter.
These are just a handful of the
economy strengthening, pro-worker policies that Democrats introduced this session.
Together, we can get back
to addressing real priorities of Wisconsinites, like addressing stagnant
wages and stalled job growth.
I often have neighbors contact me
looking for my perspective on various local and state issues. I very
much appreciate our neighbors' questions and want to dedicate a portion
of my newsletter to common questions that I hear to maintain an open
dialogue. Please continue reading for this week's question.
Q: What have you done to represent the values of the community and move
A: This past session, I heard from concerned community members and
advocates about a variety of state and community issues. In addition to
supporting the aforementioned Democratic proposals to move Wisconsin
forward, I was the primary Senate author of a number of key proposals this
Over the next several weeks, the
Larson Report will feature different proposals that I introduced during
the 2015-2016 Legislative Session, such as implementing a path to debt-free college, increasing access to cannabidiol (CBD) oil, and creating transparency around police-worn body
I look forward to having an open
dialogue with you about these and other legislative ideas. Your input will help me determine which
proposals I should reintroduce when session resumes in January 2017, and your stories
will be crucial in highlighting the importance of these bills.
Share your input or story by clicking here.
I look forward to hearing from you!
Equal Pay Day is
In 1996, to bring public awareness
to wage gaps between women and men, the National Committee on Pay Equity
(NCPE) created Equal Pay Day. On this day supporters of wage equality
are encouraged to wear red to symbolize how far women and minorities are
"in the red" with their pay.
Each year, a Tuesday in April is selected to show how far into the work
week women must work to earn what men earned the previous week. Since
women earn less on average than men, they must work longer for the same
amount of pay. The wage gap is even greater for women of color.
This year, Equal Pay Day is on April 12.
In Wisconsin, women make, on average, $10,000 less than their male
counterparts each year.
When Wisconsin women are not compensated fairly it limits their freedom
to live the American Dream. Instead of pursuing their constitutional
right to happiness, Wisconsin women have to work harder just to survive. As a state, this wage inequity causes suffering
for Wisconsin's middle class.
Past efforts to address the wage disparity saw great momentum and promise.
In 2009, Wisconsin passed the Equal Pay Enforcement Act, this legislation
gave victims of gender discrimination an avenue to recoup damages. In a
single year, Wisconsin improved it's raking by 12 spots -- from 36th to
24th in the nation -- for its gender pay gap.
Unfortunately, what followed in 2011 was a Republican-controlled
Legislature bent on sending Wisconsin backwards. The Equal Pay
Enforcement Act was hastily repealed, destroying Wisconsin's progress
fairness by eliminating equal protection laws for Wisconsin women,
limiting their ability to seek justice for discrimination. Repealing the
Act halted steps towards equal pay for women and erased the progress
that had been made.
Legislative Democrats continue to advocate for progressive legislation
that addresses wage inequity. Even so, our efforts continue to meet
harsh resistance in the Republican-controlled Assembly and Senate.
However, my commitment to fairness and rebuilding the middle class has
not wavered. I continue to look for and consider ways to effectively
address the issue and move Wisconsin forward.
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