Rep. David Crowley
MILWAUKEE, WI – Representative David Crowley (D-Milwaukee) released the following statement on the Republican Assembly Budget:
“As a representative of Milwaukee, I will not stand by and let politicians ignore the problems that threaten my home and our state. I understand that, as elected officials, we all must dutifully advocate for our districts, but understanding the important role Milwaukee plays in the success of our state is crucial to serving all Wisconsinites. It is time we focus on the people of our state rather than the politics.
“Lead continues to pollute water throughout the state, but Milwaukee has especially suffered from this crisis. Children in Milwaukee are being poisoned, with 10.8% of them being diagnosed with elevated levels of lead. This is more than double Wisconsin’s average. If we exclude lead lateral bonding from the budget, we are telling our people, particularly people of color, that politics come before their health.
“This issue and others allow racial disparities to persist in Wisconsin. African Americans are three times more likely to be arrested and convicted for marijuana related offenses, even though the facts tell us usage rates are almost identical across racial lines. Infant and maternal mortality rates are consistently higher for Black women. Child poverty disproportionately affects communities of color. We have possible solutions to help eliminate these disparities, but it is up to all of us to understand that change is needed not just for the benefit, but for the survival of our communities.
“By ignoring the problems of Milwaukee and the problems that disproportionately harm people of color, we are ignoring human lives— telling them that our politics are more important than their existence. Too many necessary programs have been cut from this budget: funding for schools, clean water, health, transportation: the list goes on and on. The message is clear: this budget puts politics before the people. The people of Wisconsin— those I and my fellow representatives have been elected to serve— deserve better than to have their needs cast aside in place of a political agenda.”