ITS TIME TO START WORKING TOGETHER ACROSS THE POLITICAL AISLE
It’s time to replace mass incarceration with holistic rehabilitation, treat mental health rather than lock it behind bars, and allow citizens returning from incarceration to successfully reenter society.
Non-sexual and non-violent offenders who complete rehabilitation and reentry case management after they’re released should get a one-time clean slate. This will directly address the #1 barrier of reentry success: employment.
I’m tired of our tax dollars being used to house inmates and them just sitting there waiting for release. I want to see local jails be turned into rehabilitation centers that have a goal to end and prevent crime by addressing the root causes. Where inmates can get their diploma or GED, learn how to budget and cook, and even how to start their own business; learning important life coping skills and building on their journeys of faith. We cannot continue to afford locking up people just to lock them up.
The need for transitional housing is also in high demand across North Carolina. Transitional housing for those reentering society from incarceration, and even those who need long-term addiction or mental health treatment.
It’s time to trash standardized testing and find better ways to assess the academic progress of our students. Teachers spend too much time testing and not enough time teaching.
School meals should not be a mystery, nor should any child go without a wholesome meal while in school. I want to bring farm-to-school ideas to our schools, teaching students to plant, grow, make, and bake school meals for themselves and their peers. This teaches important life and coping skills, and is therapeutic on many levels.
To make schools safer, it’s time to directly address the root causes of school violence and juvenile deliquency. Zero-tolerance policies for bullying and better access to family-centered mental health services are just a few ideas. By addressing socioeconomic challenges as root causes, we can curb school violence. SRO officers in each school is vital, and I support security measures such as metal detectors and improved facility layout. However, arming our educators is not a solution. Band-aid solutions no longer work.
Public education and schools must be a public policy priority as we fulfill our constitutional role in providing a free, quality public education for each child. School vouchers are not the answer and funding should not be taken away from public schools for vouchers. Any charter/private school that receives public tax dollars must be held to the same expectations of accountability and transparency as public schools are.
It’s time to directly address any and all gaps in academic achievement and access to a wholesome education, especially for at-risk and exceptional needs students, that lead to the desire to remove students from public education. We must work together to free-up and nurture our public schools. It’s time to get all politics out of our schools.
How funds from the NC Education Lottery are used should not be a mystery, and public schools should get as close to 100% of those funds as possible, not 30%-ish.
It’s time to decriminalize and legalize the medical use marijuana under a doctors care. It helps our Veterans with PTSD, cancer patients with chemo and pain, and children with seizures. God gave it to us for a reason – let’s research and use it.
Hemp has many practical benefits and uses, and the plants replenish used up soil for our farmers.
It’s time to smash the stigma and use what we’ve been given on Earth to help heal our minds, bodies, and spirit.
I don’t want your guns. I have my own, and I want someone to try breaking into my home.
What I do want, however, is for law-abiding citizens to carry out their 2nd Amendment right, respecting their guns by knowing how and when to use it properly, and how to handle crisis situations. Perhaps communities can host chili dinner events where gun owners can practice and stay up to date on latest safety techniques.
I support universal background checks on all gun sales/transfers. We need to start directly addressing the root causes of gun violence rather than spending all our time on band-aid solutions. I also believe that law enforcement should not be out-gunned when responding to a 911 call during a bank robbery.
I believe that healthcare is a Human right.
We need to expand Medicaid. Too many families are paying over $1,000-2,000 a month in premiums, and hundreds of thousands are unable to receive medical and mental preventative and treatment services.
We don’t stop there. We need to get our healthcare system to a place where access to medical or mental health treatment is not dependent on ones ability to pay. Healthy communities are productive communities.
Big pharma should not dictate who is able to afford treatment. It’s time to get the hands of private and special interests out of the cookie jar and open the doors for all North Carolinians to get and be healthy in mind, body, and spirit.
Addiction and mental health have been brushed under the rug longer than I’ve been alive. President Trump and Governor Cooper have declared an opioid epidemic, and my opponent has done nothing during his 8 years to address addiction or mental health.
It’s time to boldly address our opioid epidemic here in Onslow and across North Carolina. Jacksonville is 12th in America for heroin overdoses, and suicide is Onslow’s 5th leading cause of death. We must address prevention and treatment at the same time, and addiction must be addressed with mental health.
While we are excited about a 15-bed facility opening up in Jacksonville, it is only a small piece of the puzzle. The next question is “What happens next?”
It’s time to stop closing psychiatric beds and rehab centers. It’s time to stop cutting funds to addiction and mental health services. And it’s time to find ways to look at the root causes of addiction and mental health crises.
Eastern NC gets the short end of the stick when it comes to new, good paying jobs and representation at the state level on many things. Too much attention is given to cities like Raleigh and Charlotte.
As a former small business owner, non-profit facilitator, and successful grant writer, I know what it takes to find new opportunities and build lasting community relationships.
It’s time to stand up for Eastern NC in bringing good paying jobs and economic development. It’s time to invest in our local and youth farmers with a goal to forge a sustainable local food supply. We cannot forget about our local fishing industries and their importance to our local economy.
Working with cooperatives should be a priority in solving any issue.
Before we lower or raise taxes, I want to go through our state budget and actually see where our taxes are being used. I also want to root out corrupt and wasteful spending. Then we can look at raising or lowering taxes. Unlike propaganda against progressives, if there is an opportunity to lower taxes to spur local economic growth without putting the state budget in danger, I’ll support it.
I also support revisiting the property tax and seeing if there are better ways to make sure that everyone pays their fair share of taxes, including corporations. For example, perhaps we can lower property taxes and replace that revenue with a tax on plastic bags! When you do the math, we use plenty of plastic bags from the grocery store to help pay for our roads and schools. Just an idea.
Human life depends on the livelihood of our planet. That’s why we were called to be good Stewards of the Earth.
Houses should not be built on the waves of our beaches. Factories should not dump mysterious chemicals in our waters. Power companies should not be allowed to dump coal ash in waterways. You get the point.
I oppose drilling for oil on our coast. The risks are far too great and greatly outweigh any supposed benefit. Our coastal businesses and families have voiced their opposition and unlike my opponent, I choose to listen to them.
Climate change is a real issue and has being ignored for far too long for the sake of short-term corporate profits. God has given us many sources of clean energy from solar, wind, geothermal, biomass, and even hydropower by using the tides of our beaches. There are even ways to put turbines on county waterlines that can power local homes 24/7. Point being: it’s time to man up and be more responsible with our environment.
There is no reason why facilities on our coast have not been built to withstand destructive weather. It’s time to revisit how we build buildings along our coast with a proactive mindset. There are ways to build structures that can withstand insects and tornadoes. There are better building materials that can be used that are stronger and less costly. It’s time to get and be smarter about how we build coastal buildings so we can reduce damage from future storms.