ISSUES

EDUCATION

 

"As a mother, grandmother and an educator with ten-plus years of teaching and a Master's degree in Education, I understand that investment in the future of our country relies heavily upon how much we invest in our students and their education. We need strong, well-support schools that prepare our children for a 21st century workforce."

To get there we need:

  • Expanded access to Pre-k, afterschool programs, extracurriculars, and affordable college, trade or technical education.

  • Well-qualified teachers who are flexible and willing to take on the massive responsibility of guiding our next generation, and we need to live up to our end of the bargain by ensuring those same teachers are treated fairly and paid the salaries they deserve.

  • Investment in resources that better help guide our students as they determine the best path forward for their future, that means speaking to our students earlier about alternatives to traditional college.

  • Strong partnerships with local businesses, Careerlinks, and labor organizations to educate our students about the benefits of seeking trade and technical careers and work toward fast-tracking them into jobs that need to be filled now.

"We have to accept there is not a one-size-fits-all approach to education. Similarly, there should not be one-size-fits-all measures of success for our students."

 

For those that do choose traditional college, we must cut down roadblocks that make it so difficult to afford. We can:

  • Work with states to make our local community colleges debt free.

  • Expand access to grants for those who academically qualify

  • Encourage commitment to public service sector jobs by offering incentives such as student debt reduction or cancellation. 

 

Too may already suffer from debilitating student debt. We need to work toward a path of total relief. Our economy will never see the full benefits of an educated workforce if our graduates cannot afford to start a life of their own because of their debt.

ENVIRONMENT

 

"As a local official, I have stood up to developers time and again to protect open space, preserve farmland and safeguard our air and water."

When it comes to our environment, we can no longer accept lack of oversight or lack of accountability. Here in PA-1, we are faced with countless examples of where our government has fallen short at ensuring our rights to clean air and water:

 

  • Current PFAS crisis

  • Long history of failing grades for air quality

  • Permitting of outside companies to come in and treat our health and well-being as second priorities.

It is imperative that we work toward leaving behind a country that our children and their children can live, work and breathe freely in.​ The way we do that is by:

  • Ensuring an Environmental Protection Agency that is fully funded and fully prepared to not just react swiftly when crises occur, but also prevent such crises before they are allowed to happen.

  • Restoring our leadership on the global front in the fight against climate change by returning to the Paris Climate Agreement.

  • Leading the world in cutting down emissions, green energy production, and bold new ideas to protect ourselves from an already changing climate.

 

"Our climate emergency is a big problem that requires big solutions from every level of our government."

But it has to start in our own backyards. We can:​

  • Build community-based initiatives that encourage and incentivize everyday green habits.

  • Increase energy efficiency in our homes and local businesses.

  • Expand access to community-solar in our neighborhoods.

  • Work with our local farmers to find innovative ways for them to work through the changing climate.

EQUAL OPPORTUNITY

 

"Equal opportunity is the promise our country was built on, but not the promise our country has always lived up to."

 

We need to fight for equal opportunity across all facets of our lives. Everyone deserves:

 

A livable wage, affordable housing and a secure retirement:

 

  • Each year, PA-1 continues to grow despite population losses across the Commonwealth. As our baby-boomers retire, we need to continue to attract new businesses that pay fair wages and provide plenty of opportunities and incentives for young families to settle down and build their life here.

  • We must protect social security and work to lessen the burden of property taxes for our soon-to-be and current retirees.

  • Finally, we must firmly stand by our workers' right to organize and push back against the decades-long attempt to undermine and take away that right.

 

To choose their leaders:

  • Even today, too many are shut out of voting through archaic and restrictive voting laws. We can increase participation in our elections by enacting automatic voter registration, extending vote-by-mail deadlines and expanding access through same-day registration and early-voting initiatives.

  • And, in order to protect our voices, we must continuously invest in new election securities and work to find innovative ways of limiting exposure to false information on the internet.

 

The right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness:

  • This may be a cliche as old as our nation itself, but cliches are cliches for a reason: they are true. We need to pass an Equal Rights Act that guarantees and protects for every person in this country these inalienable rights promised to us by the U.S. Constitution - no matter where they are from, what they look like, or who they love. 

FIGHTING ADDICTION

 

We have lost too many parents, children, siblings, friends, coworkers, classmates, neighbors and far too many futures. None of us are immune to the impact addiction has had on our community, as it has dug its roots deep into the very fabric of our workplaces, our schools, and our homes."

Across all differences of wealth, geography, culture, and generations, we must:

 

  • Provide better opportunity through education and jobs to increase quality of life, security,  and upward mobility. 

  • Work with local law enforcement and schools to strengthen ties with our children and train all those who interact with our younger generations on a daily basis to spot early signs of addictive behavior or mental health problems.

 

For those loved ones we know who are still struggling, who will forever be struggling against addiction, we must fight the urge to cast them aside and write them off. We must:

​​

  • Expand coverage for treatment and rehabilitation programs that go well-beyond the current 5 or 7-day programs, and grant second, third, or even fourth chances to those who seek it. Addiction is a lifelong battle. We must treat it like one.

  • Work with faith-based organizations, support groups, and mental health professionals to ensure that all who need treatment, support, or recovery programs have access to them.

  • Protect them from predators who wish to profit off of their pain. Too many have made a living off of those hurting from our addiction crisis. We need expanded regulation and oversight over all recovery and treatment centers and to put an end to patient brokering.

We cannot solve the addiction crisis in a day or even a year. It will take investments in health, treatment, law enforcement, education, job creation, and community-strengthening. It will take all of us working to end the stigmas that feed into it, and yet, sometimes it will take just one of us knowing when something isn't right, or when someone needs help, and when we need to act.

HEALTHCARE

 

"No parent should have to worry about what happens when they or their children get sick, how they’re going to pay for it, or what other necessities they will have to cut back on in order to do so."

We have to do better. We must:

  • Continue down the path set forth by the Affordable Care Act and build upon its goal of universal coverage by guaranteeing a public option with affordable baseline coverage.

  • Rein in rising premiums and high drug prices that squeeze the pocketbooks of our families.

  • Stand up to the drug companies and hold them accountable when they take advantage of their hold on the market and prioritize profits over people.

"If it were not for my access to mental healthcare, I would not have been able to find my way out of the darkness."

 

We all have our own stories. After we lost our son, yes I had a caring community, but I also was able to reach out and get help. Unfortunately, our current system places undue burden upon individuals who need help, but cannot afford it. This is unacceptable. We need to treat mental healthcare like exactly that - healthcare - and make it accessible to all who are willing to seek help. By doing so we can fight to end the stigma once and for all and save on the long-term costs of care for the many health effects that come with unchecked mental health problems. 

INFRASTRUCTURE

 

"Our infrastructure touches every facet of our everyday life. It is not just the roads and bridges we drive on but the pipes that carry our drinking water. It is not just our trains and subways but our power grids that keep the lights on in our homes and the telephone and internet lines that bring us closer together."

Without durable infrastructure, our community cannot thrive and our economy cannot grow. It is going to take major investments from our federal government and an army of trade workers, engineers and technicians to get this job done. We must:

Rebuild our pathways to work and home:

 

  • Too many of our roads and bridges have been weakened by decades of lacking maintenance and increased traffic. For some of our commuters, they have no choice but to trust the durability of these roads and bridges despite our failure to keep them from being labeled "structurally deficient." We owe it to them to assure their trust is warranted.

Rethink how we keep our community moving:

  • We need to modernize our public transportation system and promote the benefits of a ride-sharing economy, both to our environment and our wallets.

Hold our public utilities accountable and require that increases in rates come with upgrades to our services:

  • Expand access to rural broadband to connect our communities to the goods and services the internet can provide when utilized in a positive way. 

  • Upgrade our power grid to rely more heavily on greener energies and prevent large-scale outages to keep our economy and daily life running, while reducing reliance on generators or other equipment that use fossil fuels.

  • Keep our families free from harm by replacing our antiquated water systems that lower the quality of our drinking water and invest in new technologies that protect our neighborhoods from flooding and natural disasters.

PUBLIC SAFETY

 

"We cannot continue to allow the profound reality that in our country, if we go to the store, or to church, or to school, at any given moment we could be victims of senseless violence."

 

We can and must find common ground on what the Second Amendment guarantees law-abiding citizens and save lives at the same time. There are common-sense measures that we can enact now to keep our communities safe, such as:

  • Eliminate the ability for civilians to purchase military-style weapons.

  • Restrict the sale of high-capacity magazines.

  • Expand and strengthen our background checks systems and close the gun-show loophole.

  • Enact reg flag laws and extreme risk protection orders to protect unstable individuals from harming themselves or others.

  • Demand safe storage for firearms. 

At the same time, there is no doubt we need to talk about mental health. We can do better by:

  • Reaching out to our children earlier and strengthening their understanding that they can go to a parent, teacher, mentor, authority figure or law enforcement when something is wrong, and giving them the help and guidance they need when they feel lost or overwhelmed.

  • Cracking down on the hatred and propaganda that spreads through our social media and manipulates vulnerable people to commit horrible acts. 

"No cost is too high, no effort is too difficult when it comes to ending the violence and saving lives. As leaders, it is our job to serve and protect the public. We cannot continue to accept the failure of our government to act."

WORKERS' RIGHTS

 

"Our workforce is the backbone of our country - it is the heart, the soul and the brain driving our economy everyday. My parents owned a manufacturing company and I grew up helping where I could around the floor. The most important thing they taught me is that investing in your business means first investing in your employees, and that when you value your workers, they will return that value through their work."

 

There has been a decades-long attempt to undo the gains we have made when it comes to workplace protections and workers' rights. We cannot surrender to those who wish to prioritize profits over our working families. We need to:

  • Pass a livable wage at the federal level that is both fair and family-sustaining.

  • Guarantee an accessible, safe and equitable workplace both in opportunity and diversity.

  • Ensure paid family and sick leave, guaranteed hours and overtime protections.

  • Stop unfair non-compete clauses from hamstringing employees, leaving them powerless and unable to seek new opportunities or experience upward mobility.

"I'm a former teacher and a dues-paying member of the NJEA. The Janus decision may have been the fiercest attempt to date to weaken our unions, but we can't allow it to define where we go from here."

 

Janus must be a rallying cry for all of us to:

  • Reinforce a worker's right to organize by ending "right-to-work" laws, ensuring their ability to collectively bargain, communicate freely with their union representation, hold fair elections and strike without having to worry about losing their jobs.

WOMEN'S EQUALITY/

REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS

 

"I have five granddaughters. I don’t want them to wake up in 2050 and think it’s 1950." 

We have made big strides when it comes to empowering women by granting equal opportunity through increased resources and support for education and employment, but we have to continue the fight to achieve:

  • Equal pay for equal work.

  • Workplaces safe from abuse and exploitation.

  • An end to workplace discrimination against pregnant women and women who wish to start families.

  • Access to affordable and quality childcare.

 

"Without reproductive freedom/choice, women cannot fully achieve equality in the eyes of the law."

 

Our bodily decisions continue to be controlled by the states, and without autonomy over our reproductive rights, women in the United States have suffered. The disingenuous chipping away of the undue burden standard of Casey v. Planned Parenthood has to be stopped. 

 

We cannot let up until we guarantee for ALL women:

  • The unequivocal right to make decisions concerning their own bodies and access to quality and safe reproductive healthcare.

© 2019, Paid for by Judi for Congress

Checks Payable To:

Judi for Congress

P.O. Box 1433 Newtown, PA 18940

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