We deserve a representative who will champion good governance, and will fight for our interests, not special interests. That means upholding fair districts, calling for transparency in government, supporting equal rights for every resident, and making it easier for folks to vote – not harder. And I will never accept money from corporate PACs or fossil-fuel lobbyists, so you will never have to question where I stand or who I represent.
CLEAN ENERGY JOBS
Our region can become a leader in both the environment and the economy by developing clean energy jobs. We must begin the shift to not only a renewable energy economy, but the creation of high-paying, family-sustaining careers. We can do this through industry partnerships and workforce development, modernizing the grid, and creating new energy markets – all while preserving clean air and water.
INVESTMENTS IN INFRASTRUCTURE
It's long past time to invest in infrastructure, and in people. We must ensure that high-speed internet is available to every home and business, increase funding for public education and workforce development, expand access and affordability of healthcare, develop and fund programs to help working families get ahead, such as universal preschool, childcare, and eldercare, and rebuild physical infrastructure.
EDUCATION & WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT
There is no greater investment we can make in our future than funding education to benefit the next generation of families, students, and teachers. We need to revamp the Fair Funding Formula to distribute money in a more equitable manner, hold charter schools to the same standards required of public schools, fund universal and free preschool and childcare, expand grant programs, and cancel existing student loan debt. We must explore creative and innovative partnerships with industry and local businesses to create workforce development opportunities, particularly in rural and high-need communities.
As the son and grandson of policemen, I learned from a young age how to respect the second amendment while maintaining responsibility with weapon use. In Central Pennsylvania, we have a long history of hunting and game shooting, and all the hunters that I’ve met are responsible, safe, and respectful gun users, who believe in universal background checks. I believe that with gun ownership comes responsibility, and this can best be addressed through common-sense approaches including closing the background check loophole, registering weapons sold in online and private sales, and restricting Permitless Carry and Reciprocation Laws. As a legislator, I will actively work to bring ERPO laws to the floor, which will both protect people from domestic abuse with a weapon and also decrease the rate of gun-inflicted deaths by suicide. I will also work with local gun shops, police departments, and community outreach groups to ensure that every gun owner has a gun lock for each weapon they possess. Specifically in homes with young children and adolescents, I will advocate for the safe storage of weapons and ammunition.
Our communities are only as healthy as the people living in them. However, inadequate healthcare resources have a profound effect on the lives and well-being of far too many Pennsylvanians, especially in rural and underserved communities. We must work to bridge those gaps and ensure equity, access, and affordability in healthcare across the Commonwealth. We can do that by protecting the expansion of Medicaid, Medicare, and CHIP, lowering the cost of prescription drugs and out-of-pocket expenses, and preventing insurance companies from denying coverage for pre-existing conditions. We must also ensure access to comprehensive mental health, addiction, dental, and vision services, regardless of zip code. To do that, we need to invest in innovative programs such as telehealth, community-based healthcare solutions, and expanding grants and scholarships for students who commit to returning to work in their local communities as healthcare workers.
Our country was founded on the ideals of equality and justice for all, but we have never fully lived up to that promise. Every American deserves equal rights and protection under the law, but Pennsylvania is one of 29 states in which those who identify as LGBTQ+ still lack full non-discrimination and civil rights protections. They can be denied housing, employment, public services, and medical care. They also face significant threats to their personal health and safety, and suffer disproportionately high rates of violence, bullying, and suicide. But Republican leaders like Kerry Benninghoff have callously opposed and defeated anti-discrimination and hate crime legislation. I will be a fierce advocate for the PA Fairness Act (HB 300) and all legislation prohibiting discrimination against people for simply being who they are.
RAISING THE MINIMUM WAGE
Ensuring that everyone is paid a living wage will stimulate our local economies and invest valuable resources back into our communities. We need to rebuild and support the middle and working class by supporting a fair economy, including ending corporate handouts and cleaning up the tax code to eliminate loopholes for billionaires and multinational corporations. I support raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour and indexing it to inflation so that we don’t find ourselves in this position again. And to bolster a living wage, we need to include paid sick time, paid family leave, and overtime pay for working extra hours.
The opioid crisis has had a devastating impact on individuals, families, and communities across the Commonwealth. This crisis has resulted in untold human suffering and the loss of thousands of lives every year. It has also inflicted significant economic damage in the form of lost wages and productivity, increased healthcare costs, and the need for increased public support for those left behind. We must hold those responsible to account while ensuring that any damage awards -- such as the $1 billion settlement that PA received from the Johnson & Johnson settlement -- are invested in resources to combat this crisis. For instance, I support strengthening prescription monitoring, education, and outreach efforts. In addition, treatment options should be expanded across the Commonwealth, not inhibited by various barriers in existence today. And we must invest in life-saving training and equipment such as Narcan (naloxone) for first responders and other public safety personnel, community-based organizations, and private citizens.
I support individual rights and equitable, accessible, and affordable healthcare for everyone. And that includes a woman’s right to control her own body and work with her doctor to choose the right healthcare for her -- without restriction or interference. Reproductive rights are human rights, and it is the job of our legislators to protect the rights of every resident of this Commonwealth , not take them away. Hypocritically, representatives like Stephanie Borowicz want to strip away those rights, and have introduced legislation identical to what just passed in Texas. It has been tabled for now, but we cannot allow that to pass. As your representative in Harrisburg, not only would I vote against this, I would introduce anti-discrimination legislation, including the right of everyone to control their own body, regardless of gender identification.
UNIONS & WORKERS RIGHTS
Unions have been a saving grace of working-class folks for decades, and it is thanks to those who fought to unionize that we have a 40-hour work week, weekends, child labor laws, and so much more. And I know this personally – it was because of my father’s union-protected disability pension that my sister and I had a roof over our heads and food on the table as children. But there is still much that can be done. We must support union initiatives – Prevailing Wage, a living wage, paid time off and leave, safe and fair working conditions, job security free of discrimination – and must also support those who look to unionize. And as representatives, we need to stand firm against state Right-to-Work laws, and pass legislation protecting workers rights, like HB 106, the “Patient Safety Act.” Introduced by the SEIU Healthcare Nurses’ Alliance, this bill would enforce safe staffing practices in hospitals for nurses to have better working conditions, so that they can take better care of our loved ones who may be in their care.