On the Issues

Access to Opportunity for All

The South Bronx is ground zero for racially concentrated poverty – limiting access to opportunity. Ritchie believes the United States needs a comprehensive social safety net, from affordable health care and housing to quality education and job support. The federal government has the tools to lift millions of Americans out of poverty. Whether it’s raising the minimum wage to $15 so that all Americans have access to better paying jobs or reforming our federal tax code to reach the needs of the lowest-income Americans, Ritchie supports key measures to help eradicate poverty nationwide.

Before COVID-19, the Bronx was known as the poorest borough. It's come to be known as the essential borough. It's hardly an accident that the Bronx, which has the highest rates of racially concentrated poverty, has become the epicenter of the New York City outbreak. A reinvestment on the scale of the New Deal is required to recover and rebuild a system that protects our most vulnerable communities.

ABC Nightline, “COVID-19 outbreak exposes generations-old racial and economic divide in New York City”

Expand the Child Tax Credit

There is no issue that Ritchie is more passionate about than expanding the Child Tax Credit, which would cut poverty in America by 40% in one year. The present structure of the Child Tax Credit is regressive and inequitable since it leaves behind the poorest third of American children. And no district is more left behind than NY-15, where 68% of the children are deprived of the full benefit. Extending the full credit to all but the wealthiest families, enhancing its value, and delivering it monthly, would provide up to $300 per month per child in ongoing income support to poor and middle-class families.

A reform of the Child Tax Credit would lift millions of children out of poverty nationwide. The Child Tax Credit is effective and essential--effective at reducing poverty and at strengthening families; essential to the front-line workers who bravely put their lives at risk so that the rest of us can safely shelter in place. We owe it to children, mothers, and essential workers to make the Child Tax Credit work for them.

Data for Progress Oped, “Why We Must Expand the Child Tax Credit”

Health care is a Human Right

Health care is a right, yet tens of millions of Americans struggle to pay their health bills and are crushed by medical debt. Ritchie supports Medicare for All and he believes it’s a moral imperative that we address the failings of our health care system. Ritchie is committed to increased funding for our safety-net hospitals and facilities,like NYC’s Health + Hospitals, which serve Medicaid beneficiaries, undocumented individuals, and the uninsured. This is a life-or-death matter for districts like NY-15, where 43% of adults are covered by Medicaid and many of our neighbors are undocumented and uninsured.

I see it (school segregation) as one the most pressing challenges facing our city. I want to approach school diversity not as a matter of education but as a matter of human rights. For me, racial segregation is a human rights violation and we should think of racial integration as a human rights remedy.

NBCBLK, “NYC Proposal Sheds Light on Nation’s School Segregation Issue”

Desegregate Schools & Cancel Student Loan Debt

Ritchie believes in fixing our education system to make it more equitable and cancelling student debt. Across the country – and especially in the South Bronx – schools are still segregated by race and income, denying a generation of kids of color a fighting chance at a decent life. Ritchie supports holding school districts accountable for their failures to provide a quality education to all students and for their lack of effort to improve. He also supports alleviating the $1.7 billion student debt burden held by millions of Americans.

Ritchie's Platform