ERIN ON THE ISSUES
Tell Erin what's important to you!
In these unprecedented times, it is more important than ever for Minnesotans to have access to affordable and quality health care.
No one should have to forgo care when they need it the most because they can’t afford it. It’s time to make health care and prescription drugs more accessible for all Minnesotans.
For years, the federal and state government have not met their obligation to pay for special education services. This has forced schools across the state to pull money out of the general budget to fill this funding gap.
In Lakeville, this adds up to to $12.5 million dollars every school year, which requires the district to cut student services and drives up class sizes. The funding gap has also meant that the school district has had to ask voters to pass several school levies, which increases the tax burden on homeowners and local businesses.
It is time for the state to fully fund public schools.
Tax Fairness for Families
Between the cost of childcare, medical insurance, and prescription drug prices, I understand the stress that families feel when balancing expenses. Many parents are struggling to pay off their own student loans, rather than save for their children’s future college expenses.
As a legislator, I will advocate for tax fairness for families, making sure that the state government is using our tax dollars in a fair and responsible manner.
Minnesota has a rich tradition of hunting, and most hunters pride themselves on their ability to safely handle their weapons. As a daughter of a hunter, I respect the right of responsible gun ownership.
But as a mother of two young children and as a teacher who has to do active shooter drills with my students, I know that we need sensible laws in order to protect our children. I support background checks, red flag emergency protective orders, and safe storage laws to prevent children from accessing firearms.
These laws are reasonable, have broad bipartisan support, and are proven to save lives.
Police and Public Safety
As I’ve been talking with voters in our district over the past few months, it’s clear that public safety and racial justice have been on many people’s minds.
First and foremost, I believe that everyone – black, white, brown, or indigenous – has a right to feel safe in their community. I also believe that law enforcement officers play an important role in our society and that we need to take steps to restore the trust between police officers and community members.
I recently sat down for a conversation with Lakeville Police Chief Jeff Long. Chief Long explained that Lakeville has been providing extra training for officers in our community for several years and he believes that training has resulted in a better relationship between officers and community members here in Lakeville. Examples of training provided by Lakeville PD include: crisis intervention, managing implicit bias for law enforcement, and training on how to respond to suicidal subjects and people undergoing a mental health crisis.
Both Chief Long and I support expansion of these types of training to a state-wide level. I’d like to commend Chief Long and the Lakeville PD on being proactive and implementing these changes years ago.
In addition to changes in training, we need to address the ways in which our society treats addiction, poverty, and mental health. It’s all too common for police officers to be called into situations that could be better addressed by a social worker, mental health counselor, or an addiction specialist. Making smart investments in education to reduce joblessness and poverty and treating addiction and mental health issues in a medical setting, rather than within our criminal justice system could have a huge impact on creating a safer community for everyone.
I look forward to continuing the conversation with Chief Long and Lakeville residents as we work together to ensure a safe and welcoming community for everyone.