Strength Through Diversity
Sharif is passionate about ensuring that all Pennsylvanians are treated equally. We live and work in a commonwealth that was founded on the basis of freedom from religious oppression and a city that is the historical birthplace of freedom and liberty. While our country has made tremendous strides toward equality, Pennsylvania can and must do more to protect the rights of its citizens, no matter their age, gender identity, race, ethnicity, religious affiliation or ability.
PASS AN LGBT NON-DISCRIMINATION BILL
In many parts of Pennsylvania it is perfectly legal to for a person to be fired from their job simply because they are gay. Now is the time to finally add protections for the LGBT community in our non-discriminatin laws. It is not only the right thing to do, but it makes good business sense as well. More than 400 companies in Pennsylvania, including some of the largest employers, have non-discrimination policies in place that include sexual orientation and/or gender identity. These employers recognize that by respecting diversity, they can attract and retain the best workers and maintain a competitive advantage – a key factor in stimulating economic growth.
PROMOTE RELIGIOUS FREEDOM
All Pennsylvanians are treated equally, regardless of their religious preference. We live and work in a commonwealth that was founded on the basis of freedom from religious oppression and is the historical birthplace of freedom and liberty. As the first and only Muslim member of the Pennsylvania Senate, Sharif understands the importance of religious freedom and tolerance in our democracy. He has a record of standing up against any attempts to limit religious freedom, and support policies to protect a Pennsylvanians from discrimination on the basis of their chosen religion.
STRENGTHEN VOTER RIGHTS
Voting is a fudnemental right and we should be making it something that is easier for all people to do. Sharif supports same day registration, early voting, and vote by mail. He will fight against any scheme to disenfranchise people of color, young people, seniors, first time voters, or anyone else who wants to participate in our Democracy.
STANDING UP FOR WOMEN
Sharif stands up for all women rights issues, and acknowledges the financial disparities between men and women, violence against women, and inadequate representation in various fields. He is also fighting for affordable childcare for all Pennsylvanian moms. According to Childcare Aware America, the annual cost of day care for an infant exceeds the average cost of in-state tuition and fees at public colleges in thirty-one states. Every woman deserves access to affordable childcare, so they can effectively provide for their families. On the topic of gender equality, Sharif believes we’ve come a long way, but that we certainly have a very long way to go.
FIGHT AGAINST ATTACKS ON LABOR RIGHTS
Sharif is a passionate supporter of the right of workers to organize and form unions. He will fight back any attempt to weaken unions and supports legislation that strengthens a workers ability to collectively bargain.
OPEN AN OFFICE OF NEW AMERICANS
Immigrants face many challenges when they move to a new country, in addition to attaining citizenship. These can be as simple as earning a drivers license, or as complicated as receiving certification or licensure from the appropriate state oversight board for their profession. Learning or perfecting English, finding health care solutions, and moving into new homes, neighborhoods, and school districts all provide challenges that can be resolved with a little coordination from state government and local immigrant assistance organizations, such as the Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians and Vibrant Pittsburgh. Sharif has introduced legislation that will provide for the creation of an Office of New Americans within the Department of Community and Economic Development.