What I Care About
Our current legislature has waged war on public education by diverting public dollars to charter schools, which are not held to the same standards of equality as public schools are. In order to ensure all children receive the same opportunities to flourish, I will fight for more equal funding and work to address the burdens our school districts face. By supporting our public school system, I will ensure that taxpayer dollars are used for the benefit of all of our children, not just the privileged few.
In the 106th district the average fair market value for a 2 bedroom apartment is $930/month? Right now, the minimum wage is $9.50. This means a household earning minimum wage is left with less than $5,000 left over after paying their rent and providing the most basic of human needs for their family. Costs of living continue to climb while wages have remained stagnant.
Not only will I fight to raise the minimum wage to a $15 living wage, I will make sure all workers are protected by paid sick leave so they can take care of themselves and their family members without risking their livelihood.
In Pennsylvania we need to expand legal protections to cover all people regardless of gender identity, race, religion, and sexuality. I will fight to ensure that we are able to pass laws that ensure all Pennsylvanians enjoy the same rights and protections as their neighbors.
Beyond legal protection we also need to address systemic racism as it relates to education, healthcare, and the justice system. For all the acknowledgement of systemic racism that has come to light recently it is not enough to just be aware of the problems of our society. We need to do something about it and through the state government enact meaningful, policy based, changes.
Our environment is our most precious resource. The Harrisburg area is one of the worst rated cities in America for air pollution. With over 55,000 cars traveling to Harrisburg each day, we must broaden our public transportation system and invest in smart solutions for our roadways. Through environmentally-conscious infrastructure projects, we will not only help to combat climate change, but we will also create hundreds of jobs as part of America’s 21st century green economy.
Pennsylvania has struggled continuously with the consequences of unfair maps that actively under-represent people. As a legislator I will support ending gerrymandering through an amendment to the state constitution that requires the use of an independent redistricting commission to draw our districts. Politicians should not be choosing their voters. It’s time for more transparency in our election process to make sure we are truly represented by our elected officials!
Access to healthcare is not a privilege, it's a right. Our healthcare system is broken, and too often people are forced to make choices about whether they should put food on their tables or receive the medical care they need. I will enact legislation that provides genuinely affordable options, prohibits surprise billing, and increases transparency in prescription drug pricing. I will also hold the PBM's accountable for fair reimbursements to pharmacists.
I will fight for healthcare to provide comprehensive coverage for both physical and mental/emotional health. With depression and suicide rates amongst our children skyrocketing, we must enact an effective mental health curriculum in every single school in Pennsylvania so that our children have the tools they need to manage their mental health. Additionally, I will set up programs so that children who are victims of mental or emotional abuse have an avenue for making their voice heard.
The issue of gun safety has become so entrenched in the partisan divide that we have lost sight of finding real solutions. I fully support the rights we are entitled to by the 2nd amendment. With a modern-day approach, we can continue protecting these rights, while also ensuring that guns don't end up in the wrong hands.
In order to operate a motor vehicle, we must be tested and licensed. Firearms must be treated the same way. By combining these measures with common-sense gun regulation such as red flag laws and requirements regarding gun storage, we can better ensure the safety of all of our citizens, without stripping us of the rights endowed to us by our Constitution.
Women’s Reproductive Rights
The right of a woman to make decisions about her own body and reproductive health is under attack. In Pennsylvania legislation out of Harrisburg has sought to limit this constitutionally protected right instead of making sure important health-care services are available to the most vulnerable people in our communities. I will be the leading advocate in Harrisburg working to ensure women are able to make their own decision regarding their own bodies and that everyone has access to reproductive health services.