H O P E is short for issues and my priorities.
Healthy Communities that are built on:
Opportunities for success and well-being, living wage jobs and economic security for all communities. How?
- Universal access to health care that is focused on the “triple aims” of
- Improving the patient experience of care (including quality and experience of care);
- Improving the health of populations; and
- Reducing the per capita cost of health care.
- Economic development through wise infrastructure investments and promotion that assist emerging markets and improve exports.
- Sustaining the ability to showcase agricultural products, tourism, and recreational businesses.
Public Safety means having solid support for law enforcement, being prepared for natural and human caused disasters, taking the lead on addressing gun violence as a public health concern.
Education – The Quality Education Model shows we have a shortfall of $3 Billion. Employers and new businesses rely on a well trained workforce. This investment is essential and this election can move us closer with a fair business and property tax.
Environmental health – Oregon’s greatness is the environment; the land, geology, forests and farms; water, lakes, rivers, streams, and ocean; global climate change and air we breath; plants and animals; and how we interact is what makes us unique. While we’ve made great strides, but there are constant threats to the area’s vitality. Global climate change needs immediate action. We aren’t doing enough, derailed and burning oil tankers in the Columbia Gorge, toxic air pollutants, huge Superfund cleanup sites being ignored, and lead in the drinking water are just a few recent examples.
Equity – A fundamental responsibility of government is to go beyond equality, it is achieving equity. This means critically assessing and eliminating structural and institutional barriers; doing continuous critical evaluations of policies and programs through the lens of equity. A prime example is equitable access to health care, more specifically, women’s reproductive health and freedom to choose- reproductive justice.
Ethics – there was a time when Oregon was a national leader in ethical governance. Our Progressive citizenship involvement in policy decisions meant people had a voice in what matters most. There is clearly a loss of public trust and confidence in representative democracy and public agencies. We are making improvements but we must redouble our efforts. The role of big money in the electoral process is just one example. We have to be more aggressive in enforcement and set a higher bar for identifying conflicts of interest, increased transparency and accountability. One example would be to prohibit legislators and state-wide elected officials from accepting campaign contributions from organizations that contract with the State of Oregon.
This is HOPE
These areas work together. They are built and sustained through identifying shared values, community building and self-directed actions. This is the Oregon way. They are the foundation of a civil society that evolves from public – private partnerships and public engagement. They are within our control and our responsibility. We have work to do to rebuild trust and regain confidence in the elected officials and the agencies they oversee, assure they are responsive to the communities they serve- us. But we have to describe what we expect and that is on us.
The great thing about our political process is that we can make it different. Oregonians know that better than most parts of the country. I have seen the results of people pulling together, we all have.
WE can do this!