MONTPELIER – The Vermont Progressive Party used its annual state convention on Saturday to reiterate its commitment to organized labor, to elect a new leadership committee, and to poll members on a variety of issues that will have an impact on Vermont’s political climate in the coming year.
Representatives from the Vermont State Employees Association (VSEA), the Vermont National Education Association (VT-NEA), and United Professions-Vermont AFT (UP-VAFT) spoke as part of a panel to address the political priorities of these major unions in 2016.
The Party’s newly-formed Labor Caucus also passed a resolution on the convention floor which adds to Progressives’ ambitious goals for a stronger middle class. The resolution included a committment to livable wages, paid sick leave, paid family leave, single-payer healthcare, and education as a right for all Vermonters.
Executive Director Kelly Mangan says it’s not a new direction for the Party, but rather a “doubling down” on the issues that matter most to working families. “A lot of people in our state are sick to death of corporate interests and the rich getting a ‘pass’ while working folks shoulder the burdens of high taxes and cuts to vital services, programs, and jobs,” she said. “Progressives are about finding solutions that raise up the working- and middle-class in our state, and that’s what we’ll continue to fight for in 2016.”
Convention members also elected the following leaders to the Progressive Party’s State Coordinating Committee for the next two years:
- Emma Mulvaney-Stanak, Chair (Burlington)
- Morgan Daybell, Vice Chair (Montgomery)
- Chris Brimmer, Secretary (South Ryegate)
- Martha Abbott, Treasurer (Underhill)
- Meg Polyte, Asst. Treasurer (Burlington)
- Mari Cordes (Lincoln)
- Corey Decker (Fletcher)
- Adam Norton (Montpelier)
- Carl Davis (Troy)
- Stephanie Thompson (Springfield)
- Michael Kane (Vergennes)