District Council 57

Kalra’s Pragmatic Leadership Needed in Sacramento

To understand how Ash Kalra would legislate in Sacramento, look no further than what he did in San Jose when he championed labor issues—most notably his opposition to the Measure B pension reforms.

In 2012, then-Mayor Chuck Reed led an all-out war against city employees by proposing a pension take-away measure that would slash retirements from future and current city workers—many of whom are our AFSCME sisters and brothers. Kalra, who has been a San Jose City Council member since 2008, was one of the few elected officials who stood up for the workers in opposition to the proposal. Kalra is now running for the State Assembly District 27 seat, which represents San Jose.

Although Measure B passed—but got struck down in legal challenges in part by AFSCME—Kalra continues to show that he will fight for issues that affect working people.

Our members in San Jose support Kalra because, in addition to his leadership during the attack on city workers, he has been a strong advocate for raising the minimum wage, providing more affordable housing, and even bringing BART to Santa Clara County. He has also pledged to continue to fight against any further efforts to privatize Social Security and public pensions.

“For the eight years Ash Kalra has been a City Councilmember, he has always represented the interests of workers and working families,” said AFSCME Confidential Employees’ Organization President LaVerne Washington. “As a City of San Jose worker and resident, I know Ash Kalra is the true voice of working people and families, and he will continue to represent the needs of working people in Sacramento.”

Kalra faces some tough competition to win the election because his opponent is being backed by wealthy corporate donors. But our members and other labor unions are standing with him because we know that his pragmatic leadership will help solve problems in California—not create them.

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