PHILADELPHIA (April 30, 2015) – Today, Helen Gym mother of three children in the Philadelphia Public Schools and candidate for City Council At-Large, joined Keystone Progress and Action United to denounce the influx of millions of dollars being pumped into a SuperPAC attempting to influence the Philadelphia municipal elections.

The report released by Hedgeclippers, details the long track record of Susquehanna founders Joel Greenberg, Jeff Yass, and Arthur Danchick donating vast sums of money to far right-wing politicians and organizations ranging from Gov. Scott Walker, to the arch-conservative Cato Institute and Freedom Works SuperPAC. Now, they are funneling millions of dollars into a SuperPAC benefiting the mayoral candidate they believe will best help them enact their rightwing privatization scheme for Philadelphia schools.

Speaking at today’s event, Helen Gym said, “As a mother of three children in our public schools, I find it appalling that three suburban billionaires have more influence over the direction of education in Philadelphia than parents like me. These ultra-rich bankers have a purely ideological agenda, a track record of supporting radical right-wing causes, and are wielding tremendous influence over children they will never know, in a city they don’t live in. This is not good for democracy, and the public needs to be aware of their motives.

For more than two decades I have opposed the influence of outside billionaires on our children’s schools. Susquehanna helps fund ed reform operators like the Philadelphia School Partnership. I helped file a complaint last year against PSP, and as a result PSP was fined by the Ethics Board for undisclosed lobbying around an attempt to privatize school enrollment. From Edison Schools and the state takeover to the Susquehanna Group today, my record of opposition to these narrow interest groups working against our public schools has been consistent and clear.”

Helen Gym is a former teacher, mother of three children in Philadelphia’s public schools, and a nationally recognized community activist. Helen was honored as the 2007 Citizen of the Year, and in 2014 she was honored by President Obama as a Cesar E. Chavez Champion of Change.

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