"I understand the power that resides in the office. I understand representative democracy and know that our leaders work for the people and have a responsibility to carry the voices, the concerns and the narratives of the people."
Preserving the public education system and viewing it as an investment in future generations will be a priority if I am elected. I know the power of education and understand that many of our most vulnerable children rely on the education that is provided through the public education system. Education saved my life, and I will ensure that all children from all communities have access to a high quality education. I will be a vocal advocate for public education and ensure all stakeholders are cognizant of the long-term impact of the education decisions that are currently being made. I also understand that among school-related factors, teacher quality has the greatest impact on student success. I will work to ensure that teacher training, support and resources are in place to adequately prepare school staff to educate our children. I will support any measure to make college more affordable, open access to more students and oppose measures that divert public funding from our schools. Career readiness and training is necessary to adapt to our changing economy and should be readily available to all students.
It is clear that our current immigration system is outdated and not working to address the evolving needs of our district and country. I will work towards a clear, legal pathway to citizenship.
As a teacher, I had the privilege of working with students from all different backgrounds. This included students who were brought to this country as children, who by no fault of their own never obtained legal status.
For many of these children, better known as Dreamers, the United States is the only home country they know, and in some cases, English the only language they speak. I support passing the DREAM Act to provide these young people with a path to citizenship. As your representative, I will support equal access to higher education regardless of immigration status.
Immigration reform that strengthens our district’s small businesses, manufacturers, farms, and families is possible. I am committed to working with legislators on both sides of the aisle to pass comprehensive reform to our immigration system that will address the changing needs and dynamic challenges we face.
I support moving towards a single-payer healthcare system, lowering prescription drug costs and making healthcare more affordable. I am committed to fighting the opioid epidemic in Connecticut and expanding access to addiction treatment. I will work to ensure that women have full access to reproductive healthcare and maintain their right to choose without restriction.
The 5th District is home to so many veterans who have served our country. I am grateful for their service and in awe of the sacrifice made by them and their families. Too often we fail these heroes by not providing the services they need after returning home. When our veterans can’t access quality healthcare, find a steady paying job, or a place to live – we have failed. We can, and must, do better.
We need to commit ourselves to ensuring our veterans have the opportunity to receive the assistance they need for their physical and mental health, in addition to programs for education and employment.
If elected to represent you in Congress, I would support efforts to streamline disability benefit claims and reform the VA. I would encourage corporations to hire veterans by working to enact and extend tax credit for employers that hire former service members. And I would push for improvements in suicide prevention and mental health programs to help combat the epidemic of veteran suicide that claims 22 lives every day. I would also look to build upon the great work that Congresswoman Esty has done on behalf of our veterans.
When it comes to our veterans, there is no room for partisan politics. I was delighted to hear that the House Committee on Veteran’s Affairs recently hosted the first-ever bipartisan member day which allowed Members of Congress from across the country to report on the issues that veterans are facing in their communities. If elected, I would work with members of both parties to deliver results for our veterans.
Equity & Social Justice
As your representative, I will be committed to addressing the equity gap that exists in our district. I will work to address any inequities that exist in our communities and ensure that the language of our legislation protects the human and civil rights of all people. All people have value and should be treated with dignity. I will fight against racism, xenophobia, classism, economic discrimination, housing discrimination, sexism, homophobia, religious and political persecution and the abuse of any civil liberties that threaten our democratic society.
The 5th District is full of environmental treasures and challenges. We are extremely fortunate to have several important lakes and rivers, both big and small, throughout our 41 cities and towns. These waterways provide a venue for both passive and active recreation and provide value to our communities. In many cases, they have and continue to be local economic drivers. We must do all we can to preserve and protect these natural assets and fight back against any efforts to diminish their quality. Further, we have to be proactive in working together to address lake specific issues of algae bloom and invasive species. I am ready to fight for open space and funds to clean up Brownfields.
Whether I am working to preserve the environmental treasures of the 5th District or fighting to combat the effects of climate change, I will be a strong voice and vote to preserve, protect, and enhance our environment.
On December 14, 2012, I joined the rest of the nation, and the citizens of Connecticut, in mourning the tragic loss experienced at Sandy Hook Elementary School. I also know that the urban cores of our cities have been facing this epidemic, almost unnoticed by the general public, for a very long time. I’ve been in a neighborhood when gun shots have gone off, and I’ve seen firsthand how the fear of violence affects our kids. Comprehensive gun reform is needed to combat this day-to-day gun violence and its root causes.
I will fight every day in Congress to promote and pass common sense legislation that will prevent gun violence. In addition, I will work to continue to advance and improve our nation’s mental health system, while also ensuring that law enforcement has the tools to keep our streets and communities safe. For me this isn’t anti-gun or pro-gun, it’s about being anti-gun violence. We can do something about it and we have an obligation to do something about it.
Universal background checks for every gun sale.
"No Fly, No Buy," which bans the purchase of firearms by people on the FBI's terror watch list and no-fly list.
Additional funding to fight straw purchases and combat gun trafficking.
Allocating funding to empower the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to study gun violence as a public health issue.
A federal assault weapons ban to keep weapons of war off our streets.
Expanding background checks to ALL firearms, including sales on the internet.
Equality for all people. Period. Whether you are straight, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer, you deserve to live freely and without fear. I will fight every day to ensure that no one is treated differently because of who they are or who they love, and I will work to guarantee that all LGBTQ+ Americans can enjoy the full and equal protection of the law. I am proud to be endorsed by the Human Rights Campaign and the Equality PAC.
Too many people do not see Connecticut as a place of opportunity. I will work to change that by supporting job creation and training programs, especially in our community colleges and trade schools, which prepare students for well-paying jobs in industries where they are badly needed. I will support raising the minimum wage. I also believe that women and men should receive equal pay for equal work. I am committed to working to close the gender pay gap and addressing disparities that make the gap even larger for black and Latina women. Connecticut’s 5th district is home to thousands of small businesses, and I am committed to working with them to help them grow.