State House District 63A
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What, if any, specific steps will you take to address inequalities facing women in our state?
What should government do, if anything, to provide an equitable, quality public education for all children pre-K through grade 12?
In building a vibrant economy in our state, would you emphasize reforming tax policies, addressing income inequality, or something else?
What steps, if any, should be taken to curb gun violence in our state?
What is your position on current U.S. immigration policy and what, if any, changes do you propose?
There are so many dimensions to this question. I will focus on two important areas of opportunity for women. First will be protecting women's rights to control their own bodies and make their own health decisions. Second is continuing work on equitable education outcomes. Assuring that schools provide equitable access to STEM education opportunities is key for students and the future workforce.
We need to start strong with access for all young children to a high quality pre-kindergarten program that prepares them for school. For that it is important that PreK programs are aligned with the schools that the children will attend. More emphasis needs to be placed on recognizing that the whole child comes to school and responding to physical and mental health needs of students. We also need to strengthen engaging in school and after-school programs for students to allow them to explore their interests and dreams. It is important in all efforts that we have an eye on equity and hold schools accountable to that.
I would emphasize strengthening education opportunities, particularly in the STEM fields, as a way to address both income inequality and workforce needs. While there may be tax changes that would be beneficial the recent federal tax bill with its deep cuts to corporate tax rates more than met the needs for business. Maintaining Minnesota's high quality fo life is also a key economic driver in attracting and retaining the best employees and innovators to the state.
There are a number of key steps that we could take as a state to change the current culture around gun use. Requiring all gun transfers to go through a background check process should be step one. Red flag laws, allowing gun owners and family members to protect the gun owner and others in times of stress are a key reform that respects the gun and the gun owner as well as those around them.
The current US immigration policy is a function of the US Congress getting more out of not solving the real challenges in our immigration laws than recognizing the human, workforce, and other issues that are intertwined in this area. The immigration process is overly complicated, too long, poorly administrated, and too often arbitrary and seems to be getting more so. It needs to be fixed.
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