Democratic lawmakers join #fightingforfamilies week as part of nationwide push

Staff Writer

State Rep. Jason Dunnington held a press conference Wednesday advocating for Oklahoma’s low- and middle-income families.

Dunnington was joined by other Democratic representatives as part of a nationwide movement fighting for bills that would raise incomes, support creation of good jobs and level the playing field for working families.

“While some of our colleagues protect giveaways to our state’s largest corporations and wealthiest citizens, more roadblocks are being placed in the path of the most vulnerable,” said Dunnington, D-Oklahoma City. “When are we going to get serious about investing in Oklahoma’s middle class and working poor?”

Dunnington, along with Reps. Collin Walke, Forrest Bennett, Shane Stone and Claudia Griffith, highlighted bills they filed that would’ve allowed for paid sick time, tax exemptions for diapers and formula, and increased funding for community health care centers. None of the bills has received a floor hearing, but Dunnington and his colleagues said it was important to remind the public of the ongoing fight for families.

“We cannot wait another day to help the people living in Oklahoma’s shadows. We spend a lot of time in the Legislature seeking to better those who already have a smoothly paved road ahead of them, and it’s time to fight for people who may be on a bumpier path,” said Bennett, D-Oklahoma City.

The Democratic representatives intend to continue advocating for the working and middle class during the next legislative session when their bills can be heard again.

“At the end of the day, we should do everything in our power as state representatives to make sure our economy and government work for everyone, not just a wealthy few. A stronger middle class is the best and most efficient way to create a stronger Oklahoma,” said Walke, D-Oklahoma City.

The press conference was part of the multi-state #fightingforfamilies movement by State Innovation Exchange Action. The independent nonprofit is committed to achieving progressive change at the state level, while defending against efforts to move our country backward.