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With the swipe of his pen, the President condemned 800,000 immigrant kids and young adults to deportation. These immigrants do not know any other country but the United States of America as their home, as they were brought here as children. These children were told to dream, and they did as they became doctors, teachers, public servants, coaches, business owners, military, and hard-working individuals. This betrayal is inhumane and morally indefensible. The reversal of DACA has the potential to affect 22,000 New Jersey residents that contribute to New Jersey’s GDP. Yet, our governor and representatives in Trenton continue to support the President and these actions taken today.
This is another blatant attack on basic decency and common sense along with the set of ideals we have come to stand for: we are created equal; everyone, every child, deserves a chance to make their lives anything they want; and to secure our values for future generations. Now is the time to organize and mobilize to get representatives elected this November who will protect our values, citizens, and America’s spirit of inclusiveness.
State of Education
New Jersey has one of the highest ranking K-12 educational systems in the nation. According to a 2017 Quality Counts Report, New Jersey was given an overall score of 85.6 coming in 2nd to Massachusetts. We also have high school graduation rates that continue to rise for all our student subgroups. Yet, for the past seven and half years as our governor attacks our school administrators, teachers, and extended support staff our representatives in Trenton have been silent. We are at a time when the people we entrust to educate our children are not being given the respect and support they need.
Right now, all across the state educators are preparing to open the doors of their schools and welcome students to another year while their pensions go underfunded, mandates are being handed down with no financial support, and they are reduced to a numerical rating of 1-4. Yet, they will still open the doors of their classrooms and greet every student every day with a smile on their face and love in their hearts. We are at a time when education must be a top priority in Trenton but with our current legislators, it hasn’t been. It is time to send representatives to Trenton who will fight for our educators, our children’s future depends on it.
We Stand United
We stand united with all Americans who condemn without exception the terrorist actions of the racists, white supremacists, nazis, KKK members, and white nationalists this weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia and across the United States of America. Domestic terrorism and murder, fueled by pure hatred and bigotry, have no place in our country under any circumstances. The incidents over the weekend are stark reminders that we have a long way to go for our country and her citizens. This is not about political party. This is about human decency, empathy, understanding, and a willingness to work hard to overcome hatred.
We are at a tipping point in our society where we must look to our leaders to be a voice for those deserve to be heard. Leaders who will specifically identify those responsible for the heinous behaviors employed by hate groups. Therefore, we must make our voices heard and hold them accountable for their silence in the face of hate. We must promise ourselves and our children that we will fight with every waking breath to defeat hatred and fight for all that is just and good for our state and our country.
Despite an atmosphere conducive to bigotry, hate, and racism, and silence in the face of domestic terrorism, this country is more than just those who lead us. We can stem the tide by creating communities of love and acceptance. Where judgement is judged and the only thing hated is hatred. Where all people are accepted as they are. Let’s drown out the the silence and hate with love and American values. We must stand together in solidarity with those of us who are willing to do the hard work to overcome hate.
Health Care in New Jersey
The future of healthcare for New Jersey residents has never been more critical. The American Health Care Act of 2017 introduced by Republicans to replace the Affordable Health Care Act will leave almost 470,000 New Jersey residents without health insurance coverage. It is crucial for New Jersey lawmakers to expand opportunities and offer quality, affordable healthcare to all NJ residents and their families. We will work to expand access to quality health care, work with the insurance companies, stabilize coverage and reduce prescription drug costs, and thoroughly address the substance abuse epidemic within the garden state.
One year ago, our military leaders issued the order removing all gender orientation discrimination allowing anyone with the desire to volunteer their lives for this country to do so. Recently, the POTUS revoked this order, stating freedom may be defended only by certain persons, dragging our country backwards into the discriminatory past.
Right now, there are thousands of transgender American men and women actively protecting our freedoms and liberties. Within the borders and waterways of New Jersey are three military bases and a Coast Guard Training Center, which serves and protects not only the United States but also the communities and residents of our great state. This ban threatens our national security, wasting millions of our tax dollars already spent on training our brothers and sisters in arms who now find themselves under attack by this administration. Additionally this reduces our military force and her readiness to defend freedom and democracy, and we can not stand for this as it is a violation of the values that our country was built on.
We are at a time when legislation has passed prohibiting health insurers, SHBP, SEHBP, health care providers, and Medicare from discriminating in providing coverage and services based on gender identity (A4568). Another significant piece of legislation that was passed requires the Commissioner of Education to develop guidelines for school districts regarding transgender students (S3067). Neither of these bills were supported by our current representatives.
The lack of support is wrong and detrimental towards living together in a peaceful, civilized society. In the face of discriminatory silence, we proudly stand with every member of our country and her military against this assault. It is time to send representatives to Trenton who will serve and fight to protect the rights and liberties of all citizens, not just chosen groups.
Education in New Jersey serves as the essential building block for the future of our great state. Our public education system is long overdue for a sensible overhaul that protects our future through responsible, accountable, and opportunistic decision making. It is our mission to protect the rights of all students through the introduction and support of key legislation. As members of the Assembly, we will promote a strong public education plan for K-12, encourage debt-free and affordable college tuition, and repair the relationship with our educators. Subsequently, we will publicize a zero-tolerance campaign towards sexual assault on college campuses.
Preserving our natural resources and promoting eco-friendly conservation is an important responsibility for the future of New Jersey. The Pinelands National Preserve includes approximately 1.1 million acres spanning into the Ninth District along with the Barnegat Bay, Oyster Creek, and shoreline communities. We recognize the opportunity to create an exemplary model in the garden state through implementing renewable energy sources. This includes generating workforce development, responsible energy production, and reducing energy waste within our great state. Furthermore, we will effectively provide solutions from the long-overdue impact of Superstorm Sandy.
Women’s Rights & Opportunity
As Ninth District representatives, we will be the voice for protection and improvement toward rights for women throughout all components of our society. We will continually battle for equal opportunity in affordable healthcare and education while bridging the pay gap for all women across the garden state.
Veteran & Military Affairs
Our veterans have and continue to sacrifice a great deal of themselves defending our freedom. Now, it is our duty to support our veterans and service members by creating the best access to quality healthcare benefits, higher-education, prosperous career opportunities, and strengthening the needs for their families. Additionally, we will meet the current challenges by endorsing higher-quality reform that implements new programs and assistance that encourages realistic planning for our service members. As Assemblymen, we will lay the groundwork that fully addresses the jobless rates, healthcare services, property taxes, college graduation rates, and increase the focus on veterans with PTSD and suicide prevention.