Ithaca DSA Statement on Coronavirus Response
We believe in a fair society that works for everyone. The spread of COVID-19, and the public narrative around it, is highlighting the ways that our system doesn’t work this way – that it is broken. Even here in Ithaca, where many live comfortable, fulfilled lives, the reality is that we have the same problems as everywhere else – all of which are highlighted and made worse by the crisis at hand.
Here, as anywhere else, we have workers and poor people who cannot lose the scant economic security accessible to them. Isolation is impossible when your life depends on your wages.
We need to:
- Protect the poor from evictions or utility shutoffs and mandate a living wage in Tompkins County.
- Protect the homeless from infection and immediately work to provide equitable and comfortable housing for all.
- Cover the costs of testing and treatment for all affected, and work decisively to enact the NY Health Act.
- Require businesses to provide paid sick leave and penalize those who have used the crisis to deprive wages.
- Provide care for those who are at risk due to incarceration, and develop definite plans to implement alternatives to prisons.
The limited steps that the government has taken to address the economic and social effects of the outbreak show that real change is not impossible. Their shortcomings are the direct result of interference by the wealthiest people in the country. We won’t stand by while others suffer. We demand permanent relief from poverty and injustice.
Ithaca DSA Executive Team
Democratic Socialists believe that both the economy and society should be run democratically—to meet public needs, not to make profits for a few. To achieve a more just society, many structures of our government and economy must be radically transformed through greater economic and social democracy so that ordinary Americans can participate in the many decisions that affect our lives.
We are dedicated first of all to democracy, and to bringing democracy into the economic sphere. We are not a political party that runs candidates. Rather, we are a political organization that engages in many activities as needed: electoral politics, issue politics, organizing, protest, and education.
You can find lots of information on our national website.