Dear Friends and Neighbors:
I hope that you were each able to take advantage of the holiday weekend to spend additional time with family and friends. Memorial Day reminds us of the sacrifice that America’s fallen have made in order to ensure that each of us has a shot at the American dream. We must never forget their bravery and commitment to service as we work to make the American dream more accessible to more people.
In the Community
Recently, I joined Belair-Edison, Glenham-Belhar, Fort Worthington, Frankford, and many more neighborhoods for community meetings to address concerns and speak about the 2019 legislative session. I sincerely appreciate everyone who has made the time to come out and share their thoughts and concerns with me.
I was humbled to participate in the ribbon cutting ceremony for The Ulman House. Four years ago, we secured state funding to turn six abandoned homes into a beautiful new home where cancer patients can stay while receiving treatment. For young adult cancer patients and their caregivers, The Ulman House will remove the stress of finding and paying for housing during the treatment process. Partnerships like this are vital to moving our neighborhoods forward.
I was also honored to receive the “Community Action Value and Vision Award” from the Maryland Community Action Partnership. This is a phenomenal organization that serves some of the most vulnerable populations across the State of Maryland. Under the leadership of CEO Angela Martin and Board Chair Lori Cunningham, MCAP has done even more to help Marylanders facing utility challenges, food insecurity, and access to essential services. It was a wonderful event and I’m very glad to have been part of it.
Over the past month, I have also had the chance to spend time with our younger community members. I enjoyed serving as the keynote speaker for The Y in Central Maryland’s Annual Youth & Government Banquet. Among the 200 students from across the State of Maryland were students from Mervo, ACCE, and Patterson.
I also stopped by the Cub Scouts Pack 159 (Webelos 1 & 2) to talk about the value of public service and leadership. Each of the Cub Scouts asked great questions and we eventually had a conversation about the state of crime in Baltimore. In addition to formal legislation, I shared with the Cub Scouts that a critical piece to solving Baltimore’s crime problem is investing time in our young people and letting them know the value of education, hard work, and giving back to their communities. It’s always inspiring to see that young leaders like the Cub Scouts are engaged in community issues and are dedicated to being part of the solution.
Lastly, I enjoyed the opportunity to volunteer alongside nurses, lawyers, police officers, and university professors at St. Francis Neighborhood Center’s Mock Interview Program. In addition to preparing Baltimore high school students for future job interviews, we were also able to speak with them about our respective professions.
In the News
As we prepare to head into summer, it’s important to realize that the summer months can present an extra layer of difficulty for students of low-income families who depend on school-provided meals. This year, I sponsored the Summer SNAP for Children Act so that our most vulnerable children will not have to worry about going hungry while school is out for the summer. You can learn more about this initiative in my opinion piece for Maryland Matters here.
In addition to the Summer SNAP for Children Act, this year we were successful on a number of budgetary and policy fronts. We raised the statewide minimum wage to $15 an hour, lowered prescription drug costs for retirees, and secured a massive investment in public K-12 education… just to name a few things. You can learn more about why we should all be proud of the achievements of this year’s session here.
Two Last Things…
We’ll be hosting a post-session reception on Thursday, May 30 at 5:30 PM. Tickets can be purchased here. If you are unable to attend but would like to make a donation, you can also do so at this link.
The 45th District Delegation (myself and Delegates Branch, Glenn, and Smith) will be holding a 45th District End of Session Townhall on June 8 at Henderson Hopkins School from 9:00 AM – 11:00 AM. We would love for you to join us there. Additional details can be found here.
Listening. Learning. Leading.
Senator, 45th Legislative District
Senator, 45th Legislative District