The Disability caucus aims to promote the ability of Virginians with disabilities to lead an independent life with full access to the American dream. We support legislation that aims to break down discriminatory barriers, level the playing field, and provide reasonable accommodations where needed. Our legislative agenda focuses on:
- Protecting the ADA - With the Trump administration, the rights of people with disabilities are at risk. As a caucus, we will continue to speak out and be a voice for people with disabilities.
- Protecting Medicaid - Many people with disabilities rely on Medicaid for their livelihood. As Trump and the GOP tries to cut medicaid spending, the caucus will continue to advocate to protect medicaid and how it is vital to people in the disable community.
- Protecting and Fully Funding IDEA - As Secretary Devos continues to agree with the cuts to the education budget, special ed programs and IEPs for students with disabilities will be the first to go. These programs and accommodations are the foundations for students with disabilities to succeed. The caucus will continue to push for special education funding for public schools and to revise IDEA ( Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) to make sure these programs are getting the funding they need
The Virginia Young Democrats (VAYD) Labor Caucus is committed to fighting for the rights of Virginia’s workers and standing in solidarity with Virginia’s labor movement. We support policies at all levels of government that would make it easier for workers to unionize and collectively bargain, give workers more power and control over their workplaces, end employee misclassification, ensure safe and just working environments, and allow all workers to live the American Dream. Outside of the legislative arena, the Labor Caucus is dedicated to supporting workers and unions across Virginia during workplace disputes and organizing drives. We also work to educate VAYD members about the importance of unions and encourage them to unionize their workplaces if they are able to do so.
The main goal of the VAYD LGBTQA+ Caucus is to fight all anti-LGBTQA+ legislation, support candidates who fight for and represent our community, and increase awareness of LGBTQA+ issues. Our current legislative and education agenda is focused on three issues:
- LGBTQA+ Immigrant Justice - An estimated 2.7% of our nation’s undocumented immigrants identify as LGBTQA+. In fact, undocumented queer youth have been integral to building the immigration movement. The current deportation and detention process for migrants is particularly pernicious for LGBTQA+ individuals, who are often the subjects of harassment, exploitation and abuse.
- Violence Against Queer and Trans People - In 2015, advocates tracked at least 21 deaths of transgender people due to fatal violence, the most ever recorded. These victims were killed by acquaintances, partners and strangers. Some killers have been arrested and charged, while others have yet to be identified. While the details of each case differ, it is clear that fatal violence disproportionately affects transgender women of color, and that the intersections of racism, sexism, homophobia and transphobia conspire to deprive them of employment, housing, healthcare and other necessities. Sadly, we’ve already seen the murders of several transgender people this year.
- LGBTQA+ Health -Significant disparities in health between heterosexual and LGBTQA+ people still exist. The Center for American Progress identified 14 health disparities between heterosexual and LGBTQA+ adults. For example, 82% of heterosexual adults have health insurance, compared to just 77% of LGB adults and 57% of transgender adults. Similarly, 83% of heterosexual adults reported excellent or very good health, compared to only 77% of LGB adults and 67% of transgender adults. The expansion of access to health care in the U.S. should be a priority of the LGBTQA+ movement, including but not limited to accessing spouse’s medical plan and protecting the gains of the Affordable Care Act..
We are always open to input from our fellow Young Democrats. If you have any questions or input, please contact us at [email protected]!
The Rural Caucus of the Virginia Young Democrats is dedicated to representing the concerns of young Virginians in rural areas of the Commonwealth. We pursue issue advocacy to bring economic development, improved healthcare, education funding and more to rural communities. We also seek to represent the culture and needs of young rural people in our party and in our government. Our legislative agenda focuses on:
- Rural Job-Creating Initiatives
- Expanded Programs to End the Opioid Epidemic - In recent years, the Virginia Young Democrats helped pass legislation designed to increase access to and training for naloxone use, an opioid-overdose-reverse drug. Additionally, we continue to support rural job-creation initiatives to bring jobs, opportunity and hope to rural communities.
- The Development of UVA-Wise as a World-Leading Cybersecurity, Drone and Engineering/Programming Center - The Virginia Young Democrats support Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam’s plan to invest in making UVA-Wise a leading educational and research center for cutting edge industries. Graduate and doctoral programs are the most likely to drive long-term economic development. Additionally, UVA-Wise is one of only two public colleges and universities without a graduate program, the only four-year college west of the New River Valley and the second smallest public college or university in the Commonwealth.
The goal of the Women’s Caucus is to promote the involvement of women and girls in the political process and to support candidates, legislation, and policy that improve the life of women and gender equality. The Women’s Caucus will work to highlight the gender quality efforts of Democratic candidates and elected officials; support the election of Democratic women to public office; organize efforts aimed at addressing gender disparities and advancing gender equality.
The VAYD City/ County Caucus represents young professionals in VAYD and the Democratic Party of VA. The City/ County Caucus is committed to identifying and reaching out to city/county-wide Young Democrats chapters across the Commonwealth, and then bringing those chapters into the Virginia Young Democrats.
The VAYD College Caucus represents college students in VAYD and the Democratic Party of VA. The College Caucus is committed to identifying and reaching out to college Young Democrats chapters across the Commonwealth, and then bringing those chapters into the Virginia Young Democrats.
The VAYD Teen Caucus represents high school students in VAYD and the Democratic Party of VA. The Teen Caucus is committed to identifying and reaching out to high school Young Democrats chapters across the Commonwealth, and then bringing those chapters into the Virginia Young Democrats. The VAYD Teen Caucus also works to coordinate these high school chapters, and on legislative issues relevant to high school students.