Today, my colleagues approved an amendment I put forward to the Summer Youth Employment Program. This is one of our largest employment programs, and it employs thousands of teenagers every summer. My amendment requires the Department of Employment Services (DOES) to produce, and publish, basic information on program participants, most importantly on their employment following the end of the program. Additionally, it encourages DOES to work with the Council to create a more rigorous evaluation of the summer youth program for next year.
On several occasions--including yesterday when I absentmindedly barreled into her leadership team coming off the elevator--Mayor Muriel Bowser has said that we are the "new kids on the block." Yet the Mayor certainly proved herself to be a poised and forceful advocate for the District when faced with Congressional meddling into the implementation of Initiative 71 last week. I applaud and stand with the mayor on this; I believe the will of District voters should be upheld. If you have questions about the implementation of Initiative 71, here is information.
It's hard for me to believe that it has already been two weeks since many of you witnessed the swearing-in of me, my fellow council members, and Mayor Bowser! I want to give you an update on what I've been up to in that time, and what I'll be focused on in the next week and upcoming weeks ahead.
First, I want to say how thrilling it is to work with my colleagues in the Silverman council office! On Monday, Jan. 5, our first official day in the Wilson Building, I sent out an email announcing our stellar lineup. In case you missed it, you can find our staff profiles here. My ambition was to have a diverse staff of D.C. residents--some Wilson Building veterans, some who bring fresh eyes to our local government--who all have a passion for integrity, accountability, and creating opportunity for all our residents. It is gratifying to see that team in place. I look forward to you getting to know them soon.
We did it! You did it! It was just around this time last night that we started to celebrate.
What happened last night didn't happen out of the blue; it’s the result of a local movement that’s been building for a long time. Many of you have been a part of these efforts, which have included the initiative to ban corporate contributions, advocacy for an increased minimum wage and expanded paid sick days, and progressive-focused candidates and campaigns.