Open Letter to General Assembly

August 16, 2020

Public schools around the Commonwealth of Virginia are at the center of the current crisis.

A global pandemic, economic downturn, and long term project to defund and weaken public institutions have created the conditions that students, families and teachers face. Through no fault of their own, public schools and their communities are being asked to do the heavy lifting necessary to survive without enough help from other levels of government.

In spite of all the political and economic forces arrayed against them, public schools and the communities they serve are mobilizing to try to help people survive and thrive. The problems each school district or individual school faces are beyond their capacities to address. To do so, we need the resources we deserve, the resources the labor of families and working people help create, to be devoted to meeting the material and socio-emotional needs of students, families, teachers and community members.

As a candidate for School Board in Richmond, I am using my platform to represent the people of the 5th District in calling for the General Assembly to use the power and authority it derives from the people of Virginia to immediately:

  • Fund all school districts so they can effectively carry out virtual learning and socially distanced/safe services for all students regardless of family income, location, or ability, including funding for school nurses and broadband access
  • Pass Paid Family/Sick Leave legislation
  • Extend unemployment benefits and create government-funded financial support for those who do not qualify for unemployment benefits
  • Legislate statewide eviction moratoriums, rent forgiveness and mortgage forbearance
  • Immediately expand access to Virginia’s Medicaid program to all residents, regardless of income, immigration status or location
  • Repeal Right-To-Work and allow workers throughout Virginia to organize for safer and more just working conditions and compensation

To:​ Del. Jeffrey Bourne, Del. Betsy Carr, Del. Dawn Adams,
Sen. Jennifer McClellan, Sen. Ghazala Hashmi & Sen. Joe Morrissey

CC:​ Del. Eileen Filler-Corn, Del. Charniele Herring, Del. Todd Gilbert,
Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, Sen. Louise Lucas, Sen. Dick Saslaw, Sen. Tommy Norment