There is no place like home. I should know — I still reside at my childhood home in Flatbush, experiencing firsthand the issues faced by Brooklynites. Both of my parents immigrated from Jamaica in search of a better life for themselves and their families. As a child, my mother, former New York City Council Member Dr. Una S. T. Clarke, ensured that I understood the importance of community activism and how to affect real change in our society. Her efforts and my passion for our community inspired me to follow in her footsteps, making us the first mother-daughter succession in New York City Council history.
First elected to Congress in 2006, I am currently serving as the only black woman in the New York delegation. I have worked tirelessly to improve the lives and opportunities of constituents in New York’s 9th Congressional District (NY-9) — one of the nation’s most diverse districts. Since being elected, I have served as the chair, co-chair and/or founding member of several committees and caucuses including the Homeland Security Committee, Congressional Caucus on Black Women and Girls, Medicare for All Caucus, Small Business Committee, Congressional Black Caucus Immigration Task Force, Congressional Progressive Caucus, and Vice-Chair of the Energy and Commerce Committee. From housing, to immigration reform, education, and healthcare, I am proud of the work I have accomplished on behalf of the 9th District, having effectively represented my constituents while Democrats controlled the House and when we faced fierce opposition from Republicans at the beginning of my first term.
Given the current political climate, it is important that the 9th Congressional district is represented by someone who understands how policymaking works on both the local and federal level. During my time in office, I have passed legislation that increased funding for STEM programs. I support a student loan bailout program and free college for all. I am proud to have been instrumental in passing H.R. 4137, which created a discretionary grant program that encourages educational pursuits and job skill acquisition for individuals in state and federal prisons.
Healthcare should be a right, not a privilege. I am a vocal supporter of Medicare for All as the best path to achieving the overarching goal of universal coverage. Alongside my progressive colleagues, I fought against the repeal of the Affordable Care Act — the same act that I worked tirelessly to pass while representing NY-9 in 2010. In response to the opioid crisis our nation is facing, I introduced and passed H.R. 5590, the Opioid Addiction Action Plan, which would require the Centers for Medicare/Medicaid (CMS) to develop an “Opioid Addiction Action Plan” with stakeholder feedback and regular reporting. I’ve also been a vocal advocate against the defunding of Planned Parenthood, which serves many essential needs for women and families in our community.
It comes as no surprise that our housing crisis has reached a tipping point, especially in NY-9. As such, last year I introduced the Affordable Housing and Area Median Income Fairness Act (H.R.4984) to help renters in Brooklyn and beyond by cutting rent in subsidized developments and calling for the reformulation of area median income on which HUD bases affordable housing costs. Further, I introduced legislation that aims to block the use of facial recognition technology in federally assisted dwelling units. I will continue to introduce, co-sponsor, and support legislation that favors economic opportunity and small businesses while holding corporate America responsible for their actions, both environmental and economic.
Our current administration has made it clear that the American dream should not be accessed by everyone, including our immigrant and undocumented communities. I took action by introducing the ASPIRE Act, a bipartisan solution that would provide relief to all temporary protected status (TPS) eligible individuals, along with the Protect Our Sanctuary Cities Act, a bill that will end Donald Trump’s executive restrictions on sanctuary cities and prohibit the expenditure of funds to enforce these provisions.
As a devoted public servant, I will continue pressing forward to ensure that America is a fair and just country for all people, regardless of race, ethnicity, sexuality, gender or religion. Brooklyn is the birthplace of the Resistance and I am a proud member. Join me in the fight.
“I am asking for your continued support in the fight for the soul of our democracy. Brooklyn is the birthplace of the resistance and I am a proud member. Join me in the fight.”– Representative Yvette Clarke
Founder and Co-Chair
- Congressional Caucus on Black Women and Girls
- Homeland Security Committee
- Medicare for All Caucus
- Small Business Committee
- Congressional Black Caucus Immigration Task Force
- Congressional Progressive Caucus
- Energy and Commerce Committee