Progressive Community Organizations Endorse Gustavo Rivera for State Senate (SD33)


Four grassroots community organizations announce endorsement in Senate District 33 after member-led process to identify Senate candidates for progressive change

August 16, 2014 (Bronx, NY) – Citizen Action of New York, Community Voices Heard Power, Make the Road Action Fund and VOCAL-NY Action Fund announced today the endorsement of Senator Gustavo Rivera in the Democratic Primary for the 33rd Senate District in the Bronx.

Endorsements were based on responses to a questionnaire and interviews held by community leaders. Candidates were asked to provide positions on a range of issues including economic justice & jobs, education, health, housing, immigrant rights, fair elections and public safety & policing. They were then evaluated on their knowledge of these issues, and the strength of their past commitments as well as their future visions to advance each issue area.

The endorsement of Gustavo Rivera is a reflection of his ongoing commitment to advancing progressive issues and the shared values between the endorsing organizations and her campaign.

Progressive community organizations fight every day to improve the lives of hardworking working families across New York,” said State Senator Gustavo Rivera. “I am honored to have their support and look forward to continue working with them to enact real progress on the issues that matter most: improving and expanding affordable housing, creating high-paying jobs, and improving health and access to quality care.” 

“State Senator Rivera has been a strong Citizen Action ally in Albany and a steady supporter of our New York City chapter,”said Té Revesz, Citizen Action of NYC Board Chair. “We are eager to continue our work with him to finally enact the Fair Elections campaign finance system that the vast majority of New Yorkers have been demanding. We also look forward to continuing our work with Gustavo to bring a more ethical and effective government to our State, a government that works to benefit all New Yorkers.”

“Gustavo Rivera is a down to earth man of the people, not just another politician. He has the experience, determination, and drive to bring progress and prosperity to the district and improve the quality of life for the residents,” said Ketny Jean-Francois, CVH Power Board Member

“State Senator Gustavo Rivera is someone with the heart and mindset of a leader. He thoroughly tests the depth and temperature of the water before asking people to join. He is a visionary who strategizes the angles, the curves, and the right path before asking others to follow. His integrity is unquestioned and the motivation to get the job done is what makes Gustavo Rivera the candidate of choice for endorsement by Community Voices Heard Power. We look forward to a Democratic State Senate and a progressive such as Gustavo Rivera who still hears the voices of the people.” — Joseph Mpa, CVH Power Board Member

“State Senator Gustavo Rivera is a proven leader who is committed to progressive values and the community he represents,” said Bobby Tolbert, VOCAL-NY Action Fund Board Member and Bronx Resident. “From tackling growing health inequities to promoting civil rights, Gustavo takes a comprehensive and bold approach to creating much-needed change in the Bronx. VOCAL-NY Action Fund proudly endorses his candidacy and looks forward to our continued partnership for social justice across the state.”

“When asked to describe what a State Senator should be, Sen. Rivera is the first person that comes to mind. From his tireless work to support low-wage workers, immigrants and LGBTQ New Yorkers, to his strong advocacy for the community he represents, Sen Rivera is what we need in Albany. Make the Road Action Fund supports his re-election bid and we look forward to one day passing NY is our Home legislation.” – Javier H. Valdés, co-Executive Director, Make the Road Action Fund


Citizen Action of New York is a grassroots membership organization taking on big issues that are at the center of transforming American society – issues like: quality education and after-school programs for all our kids; guaranteed quality, affordable health care; public financing of election campaigns; and dismantling racism and promoting racial justice. We look for opportunities to accomplish big changes – not small, incremental reforms. We work to elect progressive candidates to office who are committed to these issues. Citizen Action of New York has eight chapters and affiliates in major cities across New York State and is the New York State affiliate of USAction, which brings together citizen organizations from around the country to form a strong national progressive voice.

CVH Power is working to make New York State a model of democratic participation and progressive policies and programs that will improve the lives of poor and working class families across the state and be a model for the rest of the country. CVH Power’s issues include those that affect low-income families and their communities.   We fight for the maintenance and expansion of the social safety net; for the preservation and improvement of public and affordable housing options; for the creation of living wage jobs and the workforce development system to help people access these; for equity in the tax structure and shifted governmental spending priorities so that critical programs are sustained; and more! CVH Power currently organizes in New York City, Westchester County, Orange County, and Dutchess County.

The Make the Road Action Fund, builds political power rooted in working class Latino communities, promotes policy solutions that improve the lives of all New Yorkers, and strengthens the movement for justice through electoral and grassroots organizing to advance progressive political and policy change in New York State. The Action Fund builds on more than a decade of work by Make the Road New York, the largest community-based participatory immigrant organization in New York City. Today, Make the Road New York has over 15,000 dues paying members, primarily Latino immigrants, and active bases of community power in Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Long Island.

Voices Of Community Activists & Leaders (VOCAL-NY) is a statewide grassroots membership organization building power among low-income people affected by HIV/AIDS, the drug war and mass incarceration, along with the organizations that serve us, to create healthy and just communities. We accomplish this through community organizing, leadership development, public education, participatory research and direct action.