Select Page

Op-ed

Lehigh Valley Manufacturing Didn’t Cease when Bethlehem Steel Closed. It’s thriving

Lehigh Valley Manufacturing Didn’t Cease when Bethlehem Steel Closed. It’s thriving

Op-ed By Lisa Boscola

In the Lehigh Valley, we had much to celebrate during “Manufacturing Week” in Pennsylvania from Oct. 7-14. Too many people still think that our manufacturing economy ceased when the Bethlehem Steel smokestacks stopped billowing. As the daughter of a steelworker, I am happy to report that manufacturing is alive and well here. We are home to well-known manufacturers: Mack Trucks, Lutron Electronics, Bosch Rexroth, Victaulic, and Lehigh Valley Heavy Forge.

read more
Building a Better Student-to-Teacher Pipeline Can Ease Staffing Crisis

Building a Better Student-to-Teacher Pipeline Can Ease Staffing Crisis

Op-ed By Senator Vincent Hughes and Sharif El-Mekki

A decade ago, Pennsylvania certified 20,000 new teachers.  Last year, that number was down to 6,000.  Chronic understaffing, along with underfunding, is driving increased burnout and shorter teaching careers.

That loss of teachers is particularly concerning among communities of color which make up 37 percent of the student body, but only 7 percent of teachers.

Simply put, Pennsylvania’s teacher workforce is not keeping up with a rapidly diversifying student body, leading to a classroom experience that is less than ideal for both the teacher and the student. 

read more
Dillon Focuses on Quality of Life

Dillon Focuses on Quality of Life

Op-ed by Senator Jimmy Dillon

As a recent candidate for public office and a new member of the State Senate I’ve learned quality of life is still the driving force in local politics. The things that make a difference in the day-to-day lives of the people I serve are usually far less dramatic than the hot button topics in Harrisburg or Washington.

read more
Senator Marty Flynn Issues Response to Supreme Court Ruling on Abortion

Senator Marty Flynn Issues Response to Supreme Court Ruling on Abortion

Op-ed by Senator Marty Flynn

I was very disheartened on Friday when six Supreme Court Justices disregarded 50 years of precedent and overturned Roe v. Wade. While a majority of Americans support a woman’s right to choose, this is still a very divisive issue, and over the years I’ve spoken with constituents from all walks of life to get a sense of how they feel about it and why. Most people feel women should be able to make this decision for themselves, but when speaking with constituents who agree with the Supreme Court’s ruling, the answer I hear most often is “I’m pro-life.”

read more
When Will Leaders Act on Guns?

When Will Leaders Act on Guns?

Op-ed by Senator Wayne Fontana 

This weekend, our country will be “celebrating” Memorial Day. A day to honor those who have died in our nation’s wars. At the same time, our country will also be mourning the innocent young lives lost because they were ruthlessly gun down by an 18-year-old mad man in Uvalde, Texas. When and why has the United States become so tolerant of this sickening violence? 

read more
Open Access to the Ballot Box: Allow Independents to Vote in Primary Elections

Open Access to the Ballot Box: Allow Independents to Vote in Primary Elections

Op-ed by Senator Lisa Boscola

With primary election season upon us, it is apropos to talk about our Independent voters who are disenfranchised from these elections.  For nearly 25 years, I have been a leading voice, unrelenting advocate, supporter and prime sponsor of bills to give voters unaffiliated with any party the right to participate in our primary elections. Membership in a political party (or the decision to avoid joining a political party) should not dictate whether a voter can vote in a primary. 

read more
Senator John I. Kane Reflects on First Year in Office

Senator John I. Kane Reflects on First Year in Office

OpEd by Senator John I. Kane

Its been just over a year since I was sworn in as the state Senator for the 9th Senatorial District, representing parts of Delaware and Chester Counties. During that time, I’ve met with business owners, community leaders, veterans, educators, nurses, and neighbors. I’ve connected with you at district events and open houses, via phone call and over Zoom. And its been an honor to learn about the issues that matter most to you and connect with you and your families about the work I’m doing right here in the district and back in Harrisburg.

read more
The change Philadelphia needs

The change Philadelphia needs

Op-ed by Senator Art Haywood

There were 499 homicides in Philadelphia in 2020. That grim number was surpassed in 2021 when 562 were murdered in the city. We are only a month into 2022, and the City of Philadelphia has reported another 44 murders. However, in Boston, Dallas, Jacksonville, Fla., Kansas City, Mo., Miami, Seattle and St. Louis, murders declined in 2021.

read more
To honor Dr. King’s legacy, raise the minimum wage

To honor Dr. King’s legacy, raise the minimum wage

OpEd by Senator John I. Kane

59 years ago, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. gave his historic “I Have a Dream” speech at the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. He asked the audience of 250,000 how, a century after the end of slavery, Black Americans still “live[d] on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity.” For Dr. King, the protesters were at the capital to “cash a check”, and to finally make the promise of the American Dream a reality for everyone, regardless of the color of their skin.

read more
It’s time to Free the Funds

It’s time to Free the Funds

OpEd by Senator John Kane

About six months ago, President Biden signed the American Rescue Plan, a historic investment in the working families and communities who had been hit hardest by the coronavirus pandemic. At the time, I applauded that bill – it was proof of what good government can do, of how we can invest in working people to build our economy back.

read more
Stop the New Steal

Stop the New Steal

Op-ed By Senator Tim Kearney

In the days and weeks leading to the violent January 6th insurrection at the US Capitol, ex-president Trump’s most ardent supporters believed they were fighting to “stop the steal” of the US Presidency. Suddenly, many months later, the Republican Party of safety and security wants to share your private information, steal your freedom to vote, and reverse the voice of the American people. 

read more
Help is Here

Help is Here

OpEd by Senator John Kane

It’s been a challenging month for working Pennsylvanians: the Supreme Court struck down the federal eviction moratorium; expanded pandemic unemployment benefits are ending; Hurricane Ida devastated our communities. But there are also still an unprecedented number of support programs available to help families get back on their feet. This is what we, as elected officials, should be doing right now: supporting working families as best we can. I wanted to take a few minutes and highlight some of the resources available to Pennsylvanians.

read more
It’s time to change solitary confinement in Pennsylvania

It’s time to change solitary confinement in Pennsylvania

OpEd by Senator John Kane

“I can emphatically say I have more trauma from six months in solitary than four combat tours in the Marines.”

This is what we heard from a solitary confinement survivor, Reverend Dr. Chris Kimmenez, at our policy hearing this past Tuesday in the city of Chester. Over the past year, each of us has experienced the effects of isolation, separated from friends, family, and loved ones by the pandemic.

read more