Delivering COVID Recovery
The County must lead an economic recovery effort by putting our small businesses and working families at the forefront. Targeting resources to the communities most impacted and driving investments to create new jobs and restore those lost during the pandemic will be crucial to rebuilding a thriving economy. Let’s grow the workforce by increasing apprenticeship opportunities, expanding workforce development programs, and growing County-contracting opportunities, while helping align workers with needed services like affordable childcare.
We have an opportunity – with the right leaders who share local values and an in-depth knowledge of our community – to respond to this challenge by building a stronger, more resilient, equitable economy than we had before – where everyone comes out further ahead.
Helping Small Business
Living in the area for decades, I know how small businesses make up the fabric of our communities. District 3 has many bedrock small businesses, including some of my favorites: Twede's Diner, Duvall’s Flowers and Gifts, Woodinville’s Viva Farms, Mommy's Kitchen in Sammamish, Miller's Event Space in Carnation, and Redmond’s Shalimar Grocery – and so many more. As we exit the pandemic and support their recovery, we must continue highlighting local businesses and emphasizing local shopping. In the long run, let’s streamline regulations where possible, ease business permitting, and improve the support and climate for small businesses.
Improving Transit Options
Light Rail arriving in Redmond and the Eastside over the next several years has the potential to transform our transportation system for the better. Let’s make sure stations are easily accessible for commuters and community members across our district – connected by walking, biking, and additional Metro transit options. Metro schedules and routes must connect Issaquah, Sammamish, Woodinville, Duvall and the Snoqualmie Valley to each other and the rest of the county. I’ll advocate for additional routes, shuttles, and bike trails that allow residents to access the amazing outdoors and recreational activities of our district.
Prioritizing Affordable Housing
We are in a housing affordability crisis that hurts longtime residents, new families and young people. As our region has grown, and will continue to grow, we haven’t seen the forward-thinking leadership from our County Council district’s current representative, and the problem has only worsened, driving people out of their homes and increasing rates of homelessness. I am passionate about ensuring a region where neighbors can live, work, learn and play all in the same community. I’ll be a voice and a vote for affordable, sustainable housing for all, including looking thoughtfully in our urban corridors to create multi-use buildings – rapidly increasing affordable housing with built-in opportunities for employment, childcare, and more.
Preserving Our Environment
We live in a beautiful place in East King County, and we have a special responsibility to protect and preserve this beauty – for our health and for our future. This means conserving our open spaces and air quality, cleaning up our rivers and watersheds, maintaining our rural neighborhoods and farmlands, as well as supporting local food resiliency and sustainability programs. We must meet and exceed the ambitious goals set out by the county in our Climate Action Plan – planting 3 million trees, electrifying Metro buses, and cleaning up pollution and ensuring environmental justice for communities most affected.
Investing in Child and Elder Care
We currently have a child and elder care crisis in this country. It is prohibitively expensive to send a child or elder to a place to be taken care of and we need to address this. Once elected, I will look for, and promote, incentives and alternatives that will help to reduce the cost of child and elder care and do a better job of supporting our families. This is especially important for women in the workplace – I will be a champion for the programs and policies that give women the same opportunities, support, and pay, as men in the workforce.
Everyone in our community deserves to feel safe and welcome in East King County. Voters have entrusted the Council with reviewing and revising the practices and approach of the Sheriff’s Office – I will be a strong voice for real accountability and transparency. I’ll act to implement changes so the sheriff’s office can better serve our community and reduce crime – pushing for social workers and other first responders to respond where appropriate, like in behavioral health emergency situations; advocating for body cameras on all officers; and engaging with community members most impacted to ensure civilian oversight.
I’m also committed to addressing gun violence like a public health issue – investing in the behavioral health resources and community-based solutions needed to prevent those at-risk of hurting themselves or others.
Supporting Mental Health
It has been frustrating to me to see how much we underfund mental health and behavior health support and services, and that as a state we are 48th in the country in behavioral health support services. I will use my platform to ensure behavioral health services are accessible to all who need them, supported with adequate funding and staffing. I support new programs to strengthen the behavioral health workforce and believe workers must be paid fair wages and benefits for this critical work that helps our family, friends and community members live stable, productive lives.
Working Alongside Tribal Nations
The relationship between King County Council and the First People and Sovereign Nations is one of government to government. I am interested in using the model of Seeking Prior Informed Consent (SPIC) with our Sovereign Tribal Nations. As our next County Councilmember, I will have primary conversations about any policies or practices with members of our Sovereign Nations first when deliberating on any policies that affect King County Council, District 3.