Today marks the one-year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy. For most of us, this is a day for reflection. But for thousands of New Jersey families, who remain displaced from their homes, today is yet another day of recovery and a harsh reminder of one of the most devastating storms in our state’s history.
The level of community solidarity that followed the storm was astounding. New Jersey’s emergency services went above and beyond the call of duty to ensure community safety, to restore power, and clean up debris. Workers and businesses throughout the community were able to provide a semblance of normalcy in an otherwise chaotic environment.
We are thankful for all the national and global support that was provided to our state and to struggling families following Superstorm Sandy, but it is not only natural disasters that require this kind of community solidarity. Some of our state’s greatest challenges – such as poverty reaching a 52-year high, chronic unemployment, income inequality, and wage stagnation – have failed to prompt the level of attention they deserve.
We believe that the community’s response to Superstorm Sandy demonstrated the potential we have as a state to band together and overcome even the greatest of challenges. It is our hope that the economic struggles of working families will invoke the same level of urgency and solidarity that was apparent in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy.
On Election Day, November 5th, all of us can take the first step to addressing our state’s economic challenges by voting “Yes” on Ballot Question #2 to raise the minimum wage. Raising the minimum wage would not only relieve some of the financial strain on families who have been struggling to survive year after year, but would help to encourage consumer spending to create jobs and begin the real recovery our state deserves.