Maya Rockeymoore Cummings Unveils Plan for 21 Century America

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[Dr. Maya Rockeymore Cummings]
Cummings is described as “a lifelong champion for social justice, human rights, and strengthening the well-being of children, seniors, families, and workers.”
Photo: Dr. Maya Rockeymore Cummings’

Dr. Maya Rockeymore Cummings with her late husband Hon. Elijah Cummings.

Fighting the status quo is not for sissies.

Dr. Maya Rockeymore Cummings’ message affirms the truth of our interconnection--across imagined boundaries such as nation, race, gender. You can name that truth as unity in diversity, or community of difference, or e pluribus unum, but whatever the lingo, it's based on a fundamental, call it spiritual, reality. We breathe the same air. We touch the single earth. We can't escape our need for each other. That's who we are.

Her plan calls for every American working family and individual to have a meaningful job at a livable wage, affordable housing, safe neighborhoods, universal health care, universal available child care and pre-school, excellent public schools, affordable higher education, and a clean, safe environment.

Decades ago, she entered the race because she was tired of hearing the rhetoric of status quo elected officials who are not serious about eliminating disparities in health and economic outcomes for Black, Brown and low-income people. She believes it is time for a new generation who will fight for ordinary people, and truly shake up the status quo.

Cummings is described as “a lifelong champion for social justice, human rights, and strengthening the well-being of children, seniors, families, and workers.” Cummings is the former Chair of the Maryland Democratic Party, the former Chief of Staff for former Rep. Charlie Rangel, D-NY, and the widow of the late and legendary Congressman Hon. Elijah Cummings.

Dr. Cummings calls for a “new America” where people come first, and a Congress that passes laws to benefit the majority of Americans, not just the largest donors and the wealthiest Americans. Health and health-related issues are very close to her heart. She also had her own experience with cancer and cancer treatment. Just a month after her husband Elijah passed away in October of 2019, she underwent a preventive double mastectomy.

Highlights of the New Deal for COVID-19 and the 21st Century:

A “human-centric” America: The COVID-19 pandemic illuminated the immoral economic and health disparities among African Americans and Latinos that caused needless infections and deaths. Now is the time for deep structural and transformational change. This cannot happen without members of Congress who will speak truth to power, and can work with both parties, as Cummings has done for decades.

Strong Public Health Policy: Federal policy that will test, track, treat, and isolate those infected with COVID-19 is desperately needed, like the national plans that were effective in countries such as South Korea, Germany and China. The raging pandemic must be controlled to enable a safe reopening of the US. economy, and resumption of normal lives.

An economic safety net: No person in America should be evicted or have utilities shut off in their homes, apartments, hotels, or businesses because of economic hardship due to COVID-19. This is the foundation of People’s Emergency New Deal for COVID-19.

Protections for Essential Workers: Every essential worker in America, must have hazard pay, access to health care, protective masks, gloves, and other needed Personal Protective Equipment. All hospitals must have the requisite number of PPE’s, respirators, and life-saving prescription drugs.

Universal Healthcare and Wellness Support: No one should be without affordable, comprehensive, and high-quality health insurance or mental health support, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Those in facilities or institutions such as homeless shelters or prisons deserve temporary safe housing to protect them from harm. They are not expendable people; they are human beings.

Funding for infrastructure, housing security and job training: Over-crowded and crumbling public schools must be rebuilt. Job training, job creation and livable wage jobs are essential for all who want to work. Involuntary homelessness must be eliminated by creating a housing-for-all program. In addition, this nation desperately needs universal access to tuition-free college, non-profit or government-run grocery stores to eliminate food deserts in inner cities, and green jobs.

Dr. Maya Rockeymoore Cummings is the widow of the late Congressman Elijah Cummings and the author of the forthcoming book, “RAGEISM: Race, Age, Gender, Exclusion and the Politics of Health Equity” (Routledge Press).

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