June 21, 2020

Democrats Abroad 2020 Platform: the most progressive platform to date!

At the 2020 Global Convention held on 6th-7th June 2020, Democrats Abroad (DA) voted to adopt its 2020 Platform that we will take to the Democratic National Convention later this year.

During the Global Convention, this Platform was heralded as the most progressive platform ever put forward from our organisation.

It includes sweeping and extensive criminal justice reform, the Green New Deal, Medicare for All, an economy to end inequality with $15/hr minimum wage, a Federal Jobs Guarantee with universal income, support for the Equal Rights Amendment and LGBT+ rights, ending Citizens United and corporate lobbying, ending unjust immigration practices, swift strong and sensible gun reform and much more.

This Platform is an aspirational consensus document, with months of outreach, input, suggestions and feedback. This process was a new one for Democrats Abroad that sought input from all members and not just elected leaders of our organisation.

This process officially started in 2017 where each year at the Democrats Abroad Annual General Meetings (AGMs), binding resolutions are considered and if relevant for the platform, are incorporated. Those that were passed over the past several years included: Protecting Election Integrity, endorsement of Residency Based Taxation, endorsement of the Equal Rights Amendment, endorsement of Medicare for All, critical protection for citizen services including USCS/USCIS at all Embassies and Consulates, endorsement of the Green New Deal, and endorsement of extensive gun reform.

Starting at the end of 2019, Democrats Abroad began to hold Kitchen Table Talks and invitations for all members to contribute to the Global Platform. This involved extensive feedback and hundreds of submissions. Volunteers from all over DA were recruited to draft the Platform from the feedback provided which involved consultation with the DA Caucuses. From this Draft Platform, feedback was again sought through all DA members globally and resolutions were opened for Regional Conventions to further craft this consensus document. The 6 elected and 7 appointed members of the newly formed Global Platform Committee had the task of synthesising all resolutions and feedback to the final 2020 Platform.

Below are brief highlights of key areas that make up our 2020 DA Platform:

  • Sweeping criminal justice reform from law enforcement to ongoing and systemic racist injustices including de-militarization of police preferencing conflict resolution training, abolition of the death penalty, banning private prisons, better public defense and ending unjust crime enforcement bills,
  • Ending Citizens United and corporate lobbying, voter suppression and gerrymandering by strengthening Help America Vote Act, Voting Rights Act and USCS/USCIS at all Embassies and Consulates around the world,
  • An economy that works for all with a $15/hr minimum wage and ending economic inequality, protecting unions and the right to collectively bargain and protections against shareholder and corporate greed,
  • Endorsement and support for the Green New Deal, with specific ecological targets ensuring that a sustainable future is met with equitable social justice wage and income equality,
  • Student loan reform with a one-time student debt forgiveness in ensuring integrity of public education for safe learning and equitable environments,
  • A foreign policy that supports freedom and civil liberties and preference to de-escalate regional conflict
  • Endorsement for the Equal Rights Amendment, gender/sex equity and protection for all including equal rights, responsibilities, and opportunities regardless of gender, trans, intersex, and non-binary persons, sexual and reproductive justice and ending gender-based violence,
  • Endorsement of Medicare for All to deliver the best health care outcomes, as this is most economically efficient by far and will reign in out-of-control pharmaceutical costs, ensure reproductive rights, ensure accessible and unrestricted health care to those most marginalised and support disease preparedness,
  • Removing unjust and discriminatory immigration systems to reunite families, attract those with needed knowledge and skills and welcome all feeling catastrophe, violence or oppression,
  • Advocating digital rights as human rights for accessibility to digital services, protection and ensure fair media for all,
  • Ensuring a swift end to the epidemic of gun violence through strong and sensible gun control reforms
  • Ensure that our diplomatic policy must lead in foreign relations given the catastrophic impact of war and conflict and to support our service men and women to have equitable access when serving and are looked after post-service, including support for VA and VHA,
  • Social welfare that ensures that no one lives in inhumane conditions of basic needs including housing, food or any critical social security benefits,
  • Support for a Federal Jobs Guarantee with a Universal Basic Income or federal wage subsidy to ensure that everyone has dignity in right to essential wages or income, and
  • Support for Residency Based Taxation to ensure tax reprieve from onerous limitations on all U.S. citizens living abroad.

We encourage you to read the full 2020 Democrats Abroad Platform here.

You can also read about Global Convention Results:

It was an honour to serve as one of two of the Asia-Pacific elected members on the Global Platform Committee, be involved in its drafting and part of this process.

Kent Getsinger
Chair, Democrats Abroad Australia