Widely shared prosperity does not happen by accident. It happens when we deliberately invest in the foundations of a strong economy—broad and equal opportunity to build knowledge and skills, adequate compensation and support for workers, and targeted investments in conditions that foster economic growth.
Washington state’s investments should:
- Provide opportunity for all. Opportunities that most Washingtonians need to prosper—access to high-quality education, health care, transportation, clean environment, and work supports—are cost-effective and improve long-term outcomes for families, communities, and the economy.
- Create better jobs. A thriving middle class is dependent on having enough jobs that allow Washingtonians to get ahead, and policies that reward workers for their productivity. In addition, jobs that maintain our physical infrastructure (construction and maintenance on schools, roads, bridges, transportation) and build knowledge and skills (teachers, job trainers, social workers) strengthen the foundation of a strong economy.
When more people have a chance to reach their full potential and enough economic security to make investments in their future, our economy will grow.
- We lay out specific recommendations for targeted investments that bring our state closer to providing prosperity for all Washingtonians. We also provide revenue options to help pay for those investments.
- By Lori Pfingst, PhD As our newly elected leaders reconvene for next legislative session and beyond, it is important they recognize that widely shared prosperity doesn’t happen by accident. History, supported by persuasive research, proves that prosperity happens when we deliberately invest in the foundations of a strong economy – broad and equal opportunity to build knowledge and skills, adequate compensation and support for workers, and adequate investments in conditions that foster economic growth.
- The Great Recession affected families and workers of all ages, but few Washingtonians were hit as hard as young adults between 18 and 34. It is crucial that policymakers start making the investments in education, health care, economic security and other supports that can help them recover and that will lay the groundwork for the state’s future prosperity.