The California dream is not well. We may be the fifth-largest economy in the world. We may be leaders in almost every area you can imagine, from technology to agriculture to arts. We may be the place where new ideas most often turn into new industries, thanks to venture capital funding, innovative startups, world-class universities, state-of-the art labs and our diverse talent pool.
We may be all those things. But we are also the state where too many of you are working hard and still falling behind.
The costs of housing, health care and education are out of control. Exploitation and job insecurity still deny too many working people a just day’s pay. California is both the richest and poorest state. Eight million Californians find themselves living below the poverty line. Nearly 2 million children—1 in 5—live in poverty. We’re witnessing staggering levels of income and wealth inequality.