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Access to Paid Leave

City leaders have faced some of the greatest challenges brought on by COVID-19, but they now face some of the greatest opportunity. 

Amidst an ongoing economic recovery and global health crisis, providing paid leave is a benefit for both businesses and families. Across the board, paid leave policies have found positive benefits. However, without federal support, the burden falls to local governments.

How can cities make it happen?

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  • As the federal government takes an increasingly hostile stance on immigration over the last 30 years, immigrant communities have become more vulnerable than ever. With the absence of a comprehensive national policy, cities must develop policies and programs to address the influx of immigrants. Municipalities across the U.S. have to address on a daily basis a myriad of issues related to immigrants, who are overwhelmingly concentrated in metropolitan areas. This report aims to help elected officials, policy-makers, activists, and community-based organizations advocate for, design, and implement progressive policies toward immigrants at the city level.

  • President Donald Trump’s announced withdrawal of the U.S. from the Paris Climate Agreement is a clear shirking of responsibility on behalf of the federal government, but across the country, organizers, activists, mayors, governors and others are only increasing their commitment to the principles of the agreement. Mayors and their cities have many ways to contribute to sound climate policy and carbon reduction. Here we introduce some of the key ways that cities can make a difference in the face of federal inaction.

  • Integrated water management (IWM) offers a framework for managing all water within cities as a resource, reducing waste while capturing value, and seeking to integrate water into other city planning. The benefits of IWM include better resource management, development opportunities, and creative funding to improved recreational areas. This report provides an overview of the potential for IWM in cities from the big-picture framework down to examples of tools used by cities on the ground. IWM includes tools like protection of natural lands near waterways, capture of rain as a resource, an end to “waste” water, and planning for climate resilience.

  • The vision presented in this report is one in which Pittsburgh is known as the city that rebuilt its economy into one of broadly shared prosperity and strong labor standards; with a housing market that meets the needs of long-term residents while also welcoming newcomers; that offers equitable, accessible and safe transportation choices that connect all residents to employment and other critical destinations; and that prioritizes strong community-police relations with historically marginalized communities of color and new immigrants to ensure Pittsburgh is a most livable city for all residents.

  • The District of Columbia is going through a period of great transformation. While it has successfully strengthened its fiscal health and its economy and population have grown, its prosperity has not been evenly distributed. However, it is not too late for the District to adopt measures that strengthen low income communities and communities of color and push back against the trend of growing inequality. The new administration has a fresh opportunity to tackle these challenges. It will be essential that key leaders in the administration are driven by a strong vision for how to make the District work for all of its residents.

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