Featured News

House members to introduce resolution honoring Congressman John Lewis

Philadelphia House leaders applaud passage of $2.6 billion in CARES funding

(May 29, 2020)

House leaders from the Philadelphia Delegation led by Democratic Whip Jordan Harris, Democratic Chairwoman Joanna McClinton, Philadelphia Delegation Chairman Jason Dawkins, and Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus Chairman Stephen Kinsey, today applauded the passage of legislation that would deliver $2.6 billion of federal coronavirus aid to Pennsylvania’s hardest hit communities and help small businesses, schools and seniors. Read more

 

House Democrats oppose budget that would hike property taxes

(May 26, 2020)

HARRISBURG, May 26 – Democratic Leader Frank Dermody, Democratic Whip Jordan Harris and Democratic Appropriations Chairman Matt Bradford commented about today’s House vote on a partial state budget (H.B. 2387) which all 93 House Democrats opposed: “In a bipartisan rejection House Democrats stood united against the incomplete budget bill passed today. We have many questions with no answers about a $25 billion spending plan we didn’t even see in writing until today. “It’s clear that this budget doesn’t account for a multibillion-dollar revenue gap and just pushes the day of reckoning off until late November. How will the unprecedented deficit be closed? “The current plan fails to take care of homeowners struggling to pay school property taxes and will cause tax bills to increase by more than $300 million. Until we get more answers for the people we represent, Democrats will not support an incomplete budget that doesn’t meet the people’s true needs.” Read more

 

Democrats seek more support for Pennsylvania workers

(May 21, 2020)

HARRISBURG, May 21 – Democratic leaders said any review of Unemployment Compensation during the current pandemic should be aimed at fixing problems and putting workers’ needs first, rather than simply blaming the Department of Labor and Industry for factors mostly beyond its control. The House Labor and Industry Committee today received an update on benefits for unemployed claimants from senior leaders in the department including Secretary Gerard Oleksiak. “The COVID-19 pandemic triggered a sudden, widespread economic dislocation and prevented people from working in numbers never seen before,” said Democratic Leader Frank Dermody. “It’s important to understand how the department is responding to the demand for its services while many people are still waiting for unemployment benefits. “It’s also clear that after being starved of resources for years the department is doing its best with the limited tools it has and is intently focused on getting people their benefits,” Dermody said. “We need to get payments in the hands of workers who have earned them,” said Democratic Labor and Industry Chairman Pat Harkins. “I’ve heard from many constituents about their difficulties getting unemployment payments. They are understandably frustrated and I can see why.” Harkins thanked Oleksiak for answering the committee’s questions and being Read more

 

Philadelphia House leaders secure 100,000 face masks for Philadelphians working on the front lines of COVID-19 pandemic

(May 14, 2020)

Calling it an example of working together for the greater good of Philadelphia, House leaders from the Philadelphia Delegation led by Democratic Whip Jordan Harris, Democratic Chairwoman Joanna McClinton, Philadelphia Delegation Chairman Jason Dawkins, and Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus Chairman Stephen Kinsey, announced today a partnership with Lowe’s that has delivered 100,000 essential face masks to frontline workers in Philadelphia. Read more

 

House Democratic leaders denounce Republican for playing politics, wasting tax dollars and sharing fake news

(May 01, 2020)

House Democratic leaders today released the following statement regarding House Republicans’ irresponsible political antics and misinformation campaign that’s putting Pennsylvanians’ lives at risk:“History will not be kind to those that have sown division and discord during a national emergency. Astoundingly, instead of offering reassuring, responsible leadership, constructive oversight and appropriating desperately needed resources in the midst of a global pandemic, House Republicans have focused their efforts on politicizing the reopening process, undermining our faith in public health officials and engaging in a bizarre misinformation campaign by spreading fake reopening plans on social media. Read more

 

House Republicans continue playing political games with Pennsylvanians’ health insurance

(Apr 27, 2020)

Following an attempt by House Democrats to bring up legislation aimed at protecting Pennsylvanians’ health insurance, House Republicans used political gamesmanship to effectively kill any chance of the bills coming up for a vote in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. House Republicans today re-referred Democratic bills from the House Insurance Committee to the House Health Committee to avoid voting for popular measures to protect people’s health. House Democrats last week announced their intention to force these bills out of the Insurance Committee and to the full House for a vote due to inaction by that committee. Read more

 

Harris: Economies can be revived; lost lives cannot

(Apr 20, 2020)

In the midst of a rally calling to end the government closure of non-essential business due to COVID-19, state Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., House Democratic Whip, issued the following statement:“In just 45 days, over 33,000 Pennsylvanians have tested positive and over 1,200 Pennsylvanians have lost their lives to COVID-19. This virus is disproportionately impacting our frontline health care workers, our vulnerable seniors in nursing homes, and our minority communities. Read more

 

Cephas, Harris, Schweyer work to bridge the digital divide, expand educational resources to students in need during COVID-19 pandemic

(Mar 24, 2020)

As schools remain closed, state Reps. Morgan Cephas and Peter Schweyer are introducing legislation to help connect all students with the critical resources they need to continue their education during the COVID-19 pandemic. "Advanced technology has made it possible for young people to learn outside of the classroom. However, not all families are able to afford these services and devices," said Cephas, D-Phila. "Access to quality education should not be based on your ZIP code, especially during times of crisis. This is just another way I am working ensure children in our communities have access to the same tools as everyone else." The bill would allocate grant money to school districts to provide or expand access to technology and technological equipment, like laptops or tablets, for students who do not have the means to purchase them or are unable to access the Internet from home. “As a parent of two children in the Allentown School District, I know that so many of our talented kids only have access to technology at school," said Schweyer, D-Lehigh. "When the need arrives when schools need to be closed, we must make sure students have the tools they need to continue their studies, regardless of their economic circumstances. This legislation will help close the digital divide for those less fortunate Read more

 

COVID-19 Resources and Information

(Mar 20, 2020)

** A list of informational links for resouces in and around Philadelphia related to COVID-19. This will be updated as more/new information becomes available. ** Read more

 

House Democratic leaders support Gov. Wolf’s response to state health crisis

(Mar 20, 2020)

HARRISBURG, March 20 – House Democratic leaders said criticism of Gov. Tom Wolf’s decision to use emergency powers to shut down non-life-sustaining businesses in Pennsylvania is off-base in light of the most up-to-date medical guidance for dealing with COVID-19. “This unprecedented national public health emergency demands leadership from all levels of government. This is a matter of life and death, without hyperbole. That’s a reality we all need to confront. In conjunction with top medical professionals, the governor is leading our state and working to make the best decisions based on medical evidence. Every hour we see more of that evidence in front of us. “Now is the time to reduce people’s contact in order to lessen the impact of this crisis and reduce its duration. Simply put, the action taken by the governor, which is strongly supported by Secretary of Health Rachel Levine, will save lives. Taking swift action sooner rather than later will lessen the long-term impact on businesses and help our employers and employees return to normal as soon as possible. “The governor is facing impossible choices and is making decisions based on the advice of medical experts. We will continue to work and offer help and guidance to all affected employees and employers. We thank all the business owners who have led the way in this effort and helped prevent the spread of the virus, as well as the medical Read more

 

Democratic legislators applaud state Supreme Court decision to halt evictions

(Mar 18, 2020)

HARRISBURG, March 18 – Following the announcement that the Pennsylvania Supreme Court would be halting all eviction notices, multiple House Democrats, who earlier in the day requested this halt, issued the following statement: “We’re extremely appreciative to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court for showing judicious leadership in halting all evictions statewide through at least April 3 and possibly beyond depending on the COVID-19 pandemic. “As we continually urge Pennsylvanians to stay home out of great concern for their personal health as well as the health of their community, it’s unconscionable that they could still be evicted and thrown into a world of instability when stability is what they need most. This halting of evictions doesn’t only help the homeowner or lessee, it helps the entire community. “Far too many people are living paycheck to paycheck and now face the real situation of being out of work for an extended period of time. Ensuring they have a roof over their heads for the foreseeable future isn’t simply the right thing to do, it’s the moral thing to do.” The following House Democratic legislators signed on to a letter, which can be viewed here, requesting the Pennsylvania Supreme Court halt all eviction proceedings: Democratic Leader Frank Dermody, D-Allegheny. Democratic Whip Jordan Harris, D-Phila. State Rep. Mary Isaacson, D-Phila. State Read more

 

Letter to Justice Saylor asking to suspend evictions

(Mar 18, 2020)

Letter to Chief Justice Saylor asking to expand a directive in Pennsylvania to include all foreclosures and evictions, beyond those processed through HUD. Read more

 

Pennsylvanians are sending a message; House Democrats’ Plan4PA responds

(Mar 17, 2020)

By the PA House Democratic leadership team When we return to Harrisburg after spending time in our legislative districts, we always bring back with us a pretty simple and clear message from the people we represent. The families, local business owners and community leaders we speak with at home want a Pennsylvania where public officials are fighting for them, not just the special interests and politically connected who lobby at the state Capitol every day. Working families are tired of struggling day after day to get by while big corporations and special interests get all the breaks. Our neighbors tell us it’s time for Harrisburg to stop putting politics ahead of the people, and it’s time to for us to stand together for a Pennsylvania that works for all of us. That’s why PA House Democrats have made the priorities we share with the people we represent the engine that drives our Plan4PA policy agenda. We want to grow our economy and create Good Jobs everywhere. That’s why our Plan4PA calls for jobs that pay real wages and support families. Our plan protects workers, gives them a voice in the workplace and a chance to retire. It supports careers and financial stability, not just a temporary job and the constant fear of insecurity. We want people to have access to Affordable Health Care so they can visit the doctor when they are sick. That’s why our Plan4PA Read more

 

Philadelphia House leadership, legislators, call on Governor Tom Wolf to halt all Public Utility Commission utility disconnections in wake of the COVID-19 virus

(Mar 12, 2020)

Members of Philadelphia leadership team in the state House were joined by fellow Philadelphia legislators in asking Gov. Tom Wolf to place a moratorium on the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission from further utility shutoffs for the foreseeable future for all Pennsylvanians in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more

 

Fiedler, Harris and Donatucci call for halt to safe injection site until more community input is received

(Feb 26, 2020)

State Rep. Elizabeth Fiedler, D-Phila; Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., House Democratic whip; and Rep. Maria Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware, issued the following statement on the prospective opening of a safe injection site in South Philadelphia:“First and foremost, let us be clear that the opioid epidemic is a public health crisis that demands our attention. Opioid and fentanyl-related deaths have skyrocketed in Philadelphia and our city has the unfortunate distinction of having one of the highest overdose death rates in the nation. That’s why we’ve unequivocally supported legislation aimed at combating this crisis and worked with Governor Tom Wolf to increase funding for treatment and recovery. Read more

 

Rep. Harris Winter 2020 Newsletter

(Feb 25, 2020)

Click here to read Rep. Harris' latest newsletter! Read more

 

NBC 10 @ Issue

(Feb 10, 2020)

Rep. Jordan Harris joins NBC 10 @ Issue to discuss Gov. Tom Wolf's latest budget proposal. Read more

 

House Democrats embrace Wolf’s vision for Pennsylvania

(Feb 04, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Feb. 4 – House Democratic leaders praised the 2020-21 budget proposal outlined today by Gov. Tom Wolf, saying it closely tracks the Democratic Caucus’ own policy agenda, the Plan For Pennsylvania . “Governor Wolf is showing the way to make Pennsylvania a better place to live, learn and work,” said Democratic Leader Frank Dermody. “House Democrats are matching his vision with our plan for affordable health care, quality schools, good jobs, a safe and healthy environment, and justice for all people.” Wolf’s budget proposal includes heavy investment in public schools and early childhood education, as well a new workforce initiative to prepare more workers for in-demand jobs. Wolf proposed a new scholarship program to help students in the State System of Higher Education avoid crushing student debt. “This budget is a bold approach to fixing some of Pennsylvania’s most pressing issues, including reducing gun violence, increasing the minimum wage, ensuring our schools are safe places for our children to learn and addressing the rising cost of higher education,” said Democratic Whip Jordan Harris. “I’m especially glad to see Governor Wolf address the student debt crisis. Education is the elevator out of poverty and considering Pennsylvania’s students have the highest level of student loan debt in the nation, that elevator is essentially broken. The legislature must act to address this Read more

 

Harris announces over $2,900 for Chester A. Arthur School to increase healthy meal options

(Jan 29, 2020)

Citing the importance of healthy eating for students, state Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., House Democratic whip, applauded a $2,908 grant from the federal government to Chester A. Arthur School for the purchase a new cafeteria cooler. Read more

 

Dawkins and Philadelphia Delegation applaud Gov. Wolf’s budget allocation to address lead, asbestos issues in schools

(Jan 29, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Jan. 29 – Members of the House Democratic Philadelphia Delegation, led by Rep. Jason Dawkins, today applauded Gov. Tom Wolf’s plan to include funding to address lead issues in public schools, including those in Philadelphia, in the budget. “Our children deserve to learn, and our teachers deserve to teach, in schools that don’t make them sick,” said Dawkins, chairman of the Philadelphia Delegation. “This is something that we can all agree on. But for far too long, our children, teachers and anyone else who has entered school buildings in Philadelphia have taken their own lives into their hands because often lead and asbestos were lurking inside. “My delegation colleagues and I are overjoyed at the news that Governor Wolf will be making investments in lead and asbestos remediation projects in our schools. Finally, we can take the steps to make our school buildings safe places to learn and to teach,” Dawkins said. “After so many of us have fought for so long to bring attention to this crisis, we are so grateful that Governor Wolf is making this a priority.” Rep. Elizabeth Fiedler, D-Phila., secretary of the Philadelphia Delegation, agreed that it’s great news Wolf plans to prioritize the funding to allow schools to get rid of toxins. “We won’t rest until this money is a reality,” Fiedler added. “Every single Pennsylvania student Read more

 

Philadelphia House leaders applaud passage of $2.6 billion in CARES funding
May 29, 2020

House Democrats oppose budget that would hike property taxes
May 26, 2020

Democrats seek more support for Pennsylvania workers
May 21, 2020

Philadelphia House leaders secure 100,000 face masks for Philadelphians working on the front lines of COVID-19 pandemic
May 14, 2020

House Democratic leaders denounce Republican for playing politics, wasting tax dollars and sharing fake news
May 01, 2020

House Republicans continue playing political games with Pennsylvanians’ health insurance
Apr 27, 2020

Harris: Economies can be revived; lost lives cannot
Apr 20, 2020

Cephas, Harris, Schweyer work to bridge the digital divide, expand educational resources to students in need during COVID-19 pandemic
Mar 24, 2020

COVID-19 Resources and Information
Mar 20, 2020

House Democratic leaders support Gov. Wolf’s response to state health crisis
Mar 20, 2020

Democratic legislators applaud state Supreme Court decision to halt evictions
Mar 18, 2020

Letter to Justice Saylor asking to suspend evictions
Mar 18, 2020

Pennsylvanians are sending a message; House Democrats’ Plan4PA responds
Mar 17, 2020

Philadelphia House leadership, legislators, call on Governor Tom Wolf to halt all Public Utility Commission utility disconnections in wake of the COVID-19 virus
Mar 12, 2020

Fiedler, Harris and Donatucci call for halt to safe injection site until more community input is received
Feb 26, 2020

Rep. Harris Winter 2020 Newsletter
Feb 25, 2020

NBC 10 @ Issue
Feb 10, 2020

House Democrats embrace Wolf’s vision for Pennsylvania
Feb 04, 2020

Harris announces over $2,900 for Chester A. Arthur School to increase healthy meal options
Jan 29, 2020

Dawkins and Philadelphia Delegation applaud Gov. Wolf’s budget allocation to address lead, asbestos issues in schools
Jan 29, 2020