Nancy's Priorities

policy pyramid_edited_edited_edited_edit

Too often, complex issues are oversimplified to provide seemingly easy solutions. I believe we need to acknowledge the complexity and interconnectedness of the issues in order to propose thoughtful, systems oriented solutions. 

The pyramid on this page represents the interwoven aspects and the challenges we face as a community.

Eliminate Homelessness

Homelessness is a solvable problem. Today, coordinated efforts by city, county, state and federal agencies help fund the valiant efforts by a wide array of service providers.  Many people are off the street and engaged in services that wouldn't be without their efforts.  Still, we continue addressing symptoms while failing to address the root causes of homelessness.  

 

  • High housing costs and inadequate availability of affordable housing.

  • Chronic underfunding and inadequate infrastructure to provide mental health and addiction services.

  • Inadequate enforcement tools to assure the safety and security of our citizens and businesses.

 

There are ample data and examples which can guide us to durable solutions. I provide some resources I have used. 

Restoring Safety and Security

  • Those who choose a life of service deserve our profound gratitude. This includes firefighters, emergency medical personnel and police officers among many others. 

  • It is incumbent upon those who enforce our rules to earn and maintain the trust of those they serve. There exists today a lack of trust that must be remediated. Our criminal-legal system is a blunt, egregiously inequitable and extremely ineffective tool with which to enforce our laws.  We need to provide our law enforcement with an array of tools, primarily restorative, all equitable, that can serve as effective means to change behavior, not merely punish.

  • We need investment in our police, in community liaisons, community policing, improved training in de-escalation for our officers and investment in the time for officers to build relationships with the communities they serve.

Mental Health & Addiction Services

  • We currently have no cohesive system to address our mental health and addiction crisis. Today, public and private monies are spent on an array of disconnected services that treat symptoms and manage crises, but that do little to solve the underlying problems.

  • Helping individuals and families suffering from illness, whether physical or mental should be a top priority of our government. 

  • Our government needs to take responsibility for the interconnected system making it resilient, easy to navigate and effective at helping those amongst us least able to help themselves. 

Increasing Affordable Housing

  • Servers, shopkeepers, medical and dental assistants, bus drivers, teachers, home care aides, and so many others shouldn’t have to choose between long commutes and spending over 50% of their income on housing. 

  • We all need time and energy to invest in relationships with our families, friends and neighbors. For the sake of our communities and the sustainability of our planet, we can and should incentivize communal housing, fully fund rent subsidies to qualifying renters to minimize commute times and disconnection with community.  

  • We must zone for and incentivize the building of a variety of affordable housing options in every neighborhood where people work and as density rises, necessary infrastructure must keep pace.

Improving Education

  • Under-investment in education has tangible, detrimental effects on society; creating and reinforcing inequities which harm us all. 

  • To equip our businesses, health and social service sectors with essential staff, investing in education is also investing for a qualified workforce. 

  • We must invest our communal, state dollars in pre-K to vocational schools and paid apprenticeships for the healthy future of our state and our country.

Making Our Tax Structure More Equitable

  • It is a disgrace that our well educated, compassionate citizenry fails to support fair taxation. By many measures, we are the most inequitable state in the nation when it comes to how we generate revenue to support the kind of state we want to live in.

  • To fully fund the services and systems we all rely on, affordable housing and infrastructure, mental health and addiction services, safety and security as well as education, we need all those who can, to pay their fair share. 

  • I support making our tax code more progressive with capital gains tax, wealth taxes and more so that those who are the most fortunate in this state share pay for the community they choose to live in.

Saving Our Planet

  • Everyone of us needs healthy soil, air and water. Without a sustainable, healthy planet, nothing else matters. We need to arrest, as quickly as possible and by whatever means necessary, those practices which harm our soil, air and waters.

 

  • The effects of climate change, killing our citizens and destroying homes, businesses, farms and forests with heat, fire and floods, and harming our soils and ecosystems with poisons and over intensive use, are driving us to an ever more expensive clean-up and further harms the health of everyone.

 

  • Every policy passed, whether about housing, transportation, education, energy or jobs, must be viewed through the lens of its impact on our climate. Every dollar we spend must be spent making our society and our environment healthier. 

Reducing Gun Violence 

In Washington State: A person is killed with a gun every 14 hours. More people are killed with guns than die in car accidents. Nearly half of all suicides are from firearms. Firearms are the second leading cause of fatal injury for children. Nearly half of gun owners do not lock up their guns.

  • My commitment to reducing gun violence is steadfast We need a community-based approach that identifies individuals at the highest risk of participating in serious violence before any incidents take place. This identification doesn’t happen through the media or police. It happens when those who have typically used gun violence to address the cycles of trauma and harm in their lives instead turn to the community to heal.

  • A successful way this works is for youth violence prevention practitioners to connect with high-risk youth after they have gone to the emergency room for a gunshot wound. They will be connected to community members who have turned away from violence.

  • Street outreach teams and a hospital-based intervention program offer crisis intervention and case management to individuals being treated for violent injuries. Follow-up after being discharged is critical, with the intention of preventing both retaliatory violence and reinjury. This is proven to reduce shootings.

Women's Rights

II unequivocally believe in every person's autonomy to choose what is right for them and their body. The recent Supreme Court decision to permit states to determine that women don't have rights to the most basic autonomy is abhorrent and disgraceful. I will do everything in my power to ensure that reproductive health options, including abortion, are available to every woman.