Jobs and the Economy

Good jobs are the cornerstone of a strong, thriving community. As your Second Ward Alderman, I will fight to create and support good jobs that pay fair wages and offer decent benefits to everyone.

Second Ward Economy

With its great restaurants, legendary hotels, fabulous shops and tremendous cultural attractions, the Second Ward is a great place to live, work and visit. As your Alderman, I will work with business owners, labor leaders, tourism organizations like Choose Chicago and the City’s office of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, to bring tourists (and their vacation dollars) beyond downtown and into our neighborhoods.  Like you, I am proud of Chicago.  As your Alderman, I will be delighted to show off the many attractions of our beautiful city located in the Second Ward.  And, just as important, I am committed to promoting our ward as a tourist destination and a key component of our city’s economic development strategy which will create new jobs, business opportunities and much needed tax revenue from tourism dollars to move Chicago forward.

Minimum Wage

Like most people in Chicago, I was greatly encouraged by the passage of our city’s new minimum wage law, which will raise the wage from $8.25 an hour to $13 an hour by 2019 – for everyone, including domestic workers. But the new minimum wage law is just the first step: Our next challenge is to make sure that everyone follows the law, and that all workers are paid the wages they have earned. As Alderman, I will make sure the City works to enforce this important new law.

Paid Sick Leave

Chicago’s next big employment challenge is paid sick leave. Today, too many employers fail to offer paid sick days to low-wage workers. So those workers face an impossible choice – either stay home, take care of their health, and give up a day’s pay, or go to work sick and expose their colleagues and customers to disease. Paid sick days make sense for everybody – consumers and workers. As your Alderman, I will work hard to guarantee access to earned paid sick days for all Chicago workers.

But passing progressive ordinances to protect workers is not enough. We also need to create good jobs for the many people who are still unemployed, and to make sure that the people who live here have the skills they need to succeed in the workplace.

Promoting Green Tech

As your Alderman, I will fight to create good new jobs for the people who live in the Second Ward. As part of that effort, I will focus on expanding and attracting “green tech” businesses that will create new jobs here in Chicago and lead to a healthier, more sustainable environment for everyone. Already, Chicago is renowned as a leader in green industries such as wind power, solar energy and geothermal energy systems. As your Alderman, I will help to recruit more green tech companies to Chicago, and I will work with business, labor and government leaders to support training programs for workers moving into 21st century green manufacturing jobs.

Creating Training Initiatives

I will be a strong, effective proponent for education and re-training initiatives for young people and displaced workers. I grew up in a working-class community, so I know firsthand that vocation-focused education can lead to a wide range of successful, rewarding careers. My office also will work hard to connect my constituents to existing training programs throughout the Chicago area.  And, wherever possible, I will work with CPS, City Colleges and labor union leaders to create new apprenticeship programs to train people for jobs in the 21st century economy.