Brian Merlen was born the son of two mentally ill parents, who were on disability his entire life and were faced with challenges that others would find difficult to perceive. These experiences instilled in him a strong respect for social service work, and how oftentimes, the public does not fully appreciate the challenges that many in our society face in terms of both challenges you can see and those you cannot see.
As a progressive he has advocated strongly for Medicare for all, a $15 minimum wage, universal basic income, and harm reduction with reforms in the war on drugs to help people find stability and treatment instead of prison. By running for office he hopes to offer the voters of Connecticut's 4th district a valuable counter point to the centrist policies of incumbent Jim Himes.
Unlike either his millionaire opponents, he understands the issues everyday people in Fairfield County face. Many of us are struggling significantly during these trying times. We have lost our incomes from the Coronavirus and the effects of the pandemic, many of us have lost loved ones. Other issues of intersectionality like homelessness and access to SUD (Substance Use Disorder) services are also in peril from Coronavirus disruption. Significant numbers of Americans are dying from both the Coronavirus and the spike in SUD fatalities and deaths of despair from our lack of emotional support during these trying times.
The 4th District is home to 158,000 unaffiliated voters. These are Nutmegger's who deserve a real choice. A candidate with integrity. A candidate that understands the suffering of underserved communities and the experiences of those hardest hit by not one, not two but three pandemics all at once. We need someone who fights for the poorest folks and those who are dying everyday. We need representation that reflects the ENTIRE district and not just the Gold Coast. Brian Merlen has been that advocate on the frontlines all over this district and he will continue to be that advocate in the nation's capital.