Rep. Sykes after being sworn in on Opening Day of the 131st General Assembly
Rep. Sykes after being sworn in on Opening Day of the 131st General Assembly
 Rep. Sykes with Reps. Howse and Kuhns at "Real Talk" public forum with Gloria Steinem
Rep. Sykes with Reps. Howse and Kuhns at "Real Talk" public forum with Gloria Steinem
 Rep. Sykes, Ohio House Democratic Women's Caucus Co-Policy Chair, speaking with constituent at "Real Talk" public forum with Gloria Steinem
Rep. Sykes, Ohio House Democratic Women's Caucus Co-Policy Chair, speaking with constituent at "Real Talk" public forum with Gloria Steinem
Rep. Sykes speaks on new domestic violence legislation at news conference
Rep. Sykes speaks on new domestic violence legislation at news conference
 Rep. Sykes with other members of the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus
Rep. Sykes with other members of the Ohio Legislative Black Caucus
 Rep. Sykes standing in opposition of defunding abortion clinics like Planned Parenthood during House Session
Rep. Sykes standing in opposition of defunding abortion clinics like Planned Parenthood during House Session
Rep. Sykes speaking with a constituent at a town hall meeting in Akron
Rep. Sykes speaking with a constituent at a town hall meeting in Akron
 Rep. Sykes speaking at a news conference to raise concerns about SB 152, saying legislation to ban local hiring and restrict project labor agreements for public works projects will jeopardize Ohio jobs
Rep. Sykes speaking at a news conference to raise concerns about SB 152, saying legislation to ban local hiring and restrict project labor agreements for public works projects will jeopardize Ohio jobs
 Rep. Sykes speaking during the 2016 OLBC Day of Action
Rep. Sykes speaking during the 2016 OLBC Day of Action
 

Born and raised in Akron, State Rep. Emilia Strong Sykes was elected to represent her hometown (OH-34) in November 2014. With a strong sense of responsibility for the well-being of those that she serves, Sykes has tackled the challenges of her district with unmatched passion and dedication.

As representative, Sykes has pushed an aggressive job creation plan, fighting to keep local jobs for local workers and expand opportunities for middle and working class families in Akron. Rep. Sykes understands the importance of a quality education and job training for people to get ahead. She has supported young le...

 
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07.06.17 - Sykes: GOP Bill To Weaken Concealed Carry Protections Puts Public Safety In The Crosshairs

 

In a political effort to hamstring Ohio House Democratic lawmakers in a pro-gun, anti-gun debate today on the House floor, Republicans brought forward House Bill (HB) 233 for a vote, legislation that allows concealed carry permit holders to knowingly bring guns or deadly weapons into daycares, schools, airports, bars and other restricted spaces, so long as the permit holder leaves when asked to do so. Individuals who refuse to leave or return to the same business while carrying a prohibited weapon within 30 days will be subject to a fourth degree misdemeanor.

“Allowing people to knowingly bring a deadly weapon to our communities most vulnerable and high trafficked areas—like schools and daycares—will put people at risk,” said Assistant Minority Whip Emilia Sykes (D-Akron). “A concealed carry permit does not give blanket protection to people from committing criminal acts.”

 
 

07.06.17 - Sykes: Medicaid Restrictions, Taxes Among Eleven Potential Law Changes From House GOP Veto Showdown With Governor

 

Today, the Republican-controlled Ohio House of Representatives overrode eleven items Governor John Kasich vetoed in the recently passed state budget, House Bill (HB) 49. Under the House’s overrides, Medicaid expansion will have to be reauthorized through the state Controlling Board and new taxes on working people could be put in place as a condition of healthcare coverage – if the Senate takes up the House overrides.

“While I am glad the House didn’t act on a straightforward Medicaid freeze today, House Republicans set up a potentially insidious, back door freeze by seeking new barriers to Medicaid healthcare coverage for working people,” said House Democratic Assistant Whip Emilia Sykes (D-Akron). “While Ohio’s economy is lagging behind the nation’s, now isn’t the time to play games with lifesaving healthcare for hundreds of thousands of working Ohioans who want to provide economic stability for their families. With these restrictions, we are just putting up more roadblocks on a path to the middle class for working people in our state.”

 
 

06.29.17 - Rep. Emilia Strong Sykes Urges Kasich To Veto Medicaid Expansion Freeze

 

State Rep. Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron) and Ohio House Democratic lawmakers today sent a letter to Governor Kasich urging him to line-item veto the Medicaid expansion freeze in the state operating budget, House Bill (HB) 49, that will end healthcare coverage for over half-a-million people.

“The people of Ohio deserve representatives in Columbus who will stand up and fight for them,” said state Rep. Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron). “Passing the Medicaid expansion freeze and kicking people off of Medicaid is unacceptable, harmful, and cruel and unusual punishment.”

If approved by the federal government, the GOP freeze to Ohio’s Medicaid expansion will phase out medical coverage for over half-a-million Ohioans, leaving families with minimal healthcare options. 

“We need to provide healthcare for Ohio’s families, all of Ohio’s families.” Sykes said. “Without access to healthcare, lives will be lost and costs will rise. Ohio cannot afford to pay for the increased costs that will come by taking away people’s healthcare.”

A copy of the letter sent to Gov. Kasich is pasted below 

June 28, 2017

Governor John Kasich

Riffe Center, 30th Floor

77 South High Street

Columbus, Ohio 43215

Governor Kasich,

We write to urge you to line-item veto the Medicaid Expansion freeze in Budget House Bill  49. If signed into law, this will dramatically change the state’s ability to provide healthcare for many Ohioans in need.

Medicaid Expansion has allowed more than 725,000 Ohioans to receive proper care, including the developmentally disabled, the elderly, families in transition, veterans, pregnant women and low income families. Ohioans need to be healthy in order to be productive in their day to day lives. Without the ability to afford doctor visits, hospital stays, nursing home care, home health care, and long term care costs, families will spiral into debt, illness and despair.

We have had the opportunity to hear from many families who have utilized the Medicaid Expansion and how it has positively affected their lives. Now, their safety and security is in danger.

Families without health insurance are more likely to stop receiving preventative care, because the out-of-pocket cost is exorbitantly high. We implore you to consider the fate of many Ohioans who will suffer and even die due to the Medicaid expansion freeze.

We hope you will consider this proposal and choose not to sign this damaging piece of legislation into law. The future of the families of the entire state of Ohio depends on it.

Sincerely,

 
 

06.29.17 - Bipartisan Bill Would End Virtual Debtors' Prison

 

State Reps. Emilia Strong Sykes (D-Akron) and Jim Butler (R-Oakwood) today announced legislation to end virtual debtors’ prison in Ohio by granting automatic restricted driving privileges for low-level offenses unrelated to driving, like failing to pay court fines or late child support payments.

“As Americans, we believe in a justice system that is fair and impartial,” said Sykes. “But in Ohio, we have been trapping lower and middle-income taxpayers in a downward spiral of job loss, debt and jail time for low-level offenses. With this commonsense bill, we can break this cycle, further justice and get people back to work.”

Though courts may grant driving privileges without House Bill 260, punishment can vary widely and ultimately result in job loss when someone loses their ability to get to work for falling behind in court fines or child support payments. In Ohio, a person could eventually end up in jail if a license suspension results in job loss and additional fines that can’t be paid.

 
 
 

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Representative Emilia Strong Sykes
District 34
77 S. High St
10th Floor
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 466-3100
Fax      (614) 719-6944
Email Representative Sykes
 
Leadership Position : Assistant Minority Whip
Hometown :
Party : Democrat
Current Term : Expires December 2016 / Eligible to run for another term