LIST OF ISSUES
Economy & Jobs
I believe in creating new opportunities and having a living wage accessible to everyone. I am the proud daughter of a Uniroyal worker. I saw how difficult it was for my family and so many others to cope with the loss of that factory over 25 years ago. Eau Claire is finally starting to find its way, but in some ways, we have never rebounded from that loss. We still don’t have a large amount of good-paying, labor friendly jobs in this community. We have made significant economic progress in recent years and have more great opportunities with a resurgent downtown. But we also face economic challenges. We have the largest income disparity of any county in Wisconsin. We need make sure that we have diverse opportunities for people, opportunities that respect the wide-ranging talents of our state’s population. And we must show workers that respect by supporting them with fair wages and benefits.
I believe we need to fight for social justice. The one thing that I’ve learned through my work with fighting human trafficking is that if we wait until an issue has touched us personally before we start to work to changes things, we’ve waited too long. As someone who works to fight against human trafficking, I am keenly aware of how many social justice problems are interconnected. We can’t talk about homelessness without talking about affordable housing. We can’t talk about criminal justice reform without talking about alcohol and other drug issues. We can’t talk about mental health without talking about affordable healthcare. Social justice issues are not silo issues, they are interconnected.
I believe the arts are an anchor to the economic community. Eau Claire is blossoming into an arts community, into a place where the arts not only add to the region’s quality of life but help bolster the area’s economy. We need to make sure that the arts remain a vital and growing part of Eau Claire’s fabric because the environment of a community is what attracts business and people to an area. Proper funding for the arts shows respect for the work artists do. We also must strive to ensure that opportunities to enjoy the arts are available to people of all income levels.
I believe healthcare should be affordable and accessible to everyone. In 2000, I was diagnosed with a chronic health condition that left myself and my family wondering if I would ever work again. I was fortunate enough to get the care I needed, but that care isn’t accessible to everyone. The cost of healthcare and lack of affordable insurance leaves many unable to access that care that can either save or change their lives. I believe healthcare (including mental healthcare) is a right that should be accessible to everyone.
I believe education is our first priority. As a parent, I have seen how cuts to our schools over the past several years have adversely affected the morale of educators in our state and the ability of our children to receive the resources they deserve. I have seen firsthand how my daughter needed to spend an extra year at UW-Eau Claire before she was able to get the classes she needed to graduate. If we want to build our state’s economy, we need to put education at the top of our list. Reaching all children, at all levels, to bridge the opportunity gap and drive Wisconsin forward.
I believe Wisconsin is a beautiful state and we need to respect our land. It is imperative that the scientists, not business leaders, are making decisions. Our land, water and air need to be protected for ourselves and for generations to come.