My favorite part of running for office is meeting people in our community. Throughout my recent campaign for Assembly, I had the opportunity to speak with thousands of people to ask what matters most to them, and to talk about what they need from their elected leaders to help make their lives better.
Despite what you often hear on cable news, most people I met on the campaign trail weren’t interested in talking about partisan politics. More than what political parties we each belonged to, they cared most about how we can make housing more affordable, get people off the streets, ensure everyone has health care, how we can protect their homes from wildfires, protect our environment from irreversible damage, and what we could do to invest more in education and keep our kids safe from gun violence.
Those conversations were the highlight of our campaign, and they are the driving force behind how I am approaching the job of representing our community in Sacramento. I am excited to be working across the aisle to champion legislation focused on the priorities I discussed throughout the campaign. And instead of getting mired in partisan arguments, I have offered common-sense solutions to the issues facing our community. Common-sense solutions — just like the people I spoke with on the campaign trail — aren’t partisan. I am very proud to have proposed a series of bills that already have bipartisan support because they offer common-sense solutions to the biggest challenges facing our community. Those bills include:
Protecting seniors in our community from elder abuse and scams is common sense. Our bill ensures older adults and people with disabilities who are victims of major crimes receive the care and support from law enforcement they need.
Solutions to End Foster Youth to Homelessness Pipeline
One in three foster youth experiences homelessness. Ensuring foster youth — some of the most vulnerable young people in our community — have housing security when aging out of our foster system is a common-sense way to prevent homelessness. Our bill will create a new program to support funding affordable housing units for former foster youth struggling with housing security, for current and former foster youth ages 18 to 25.
Parental and Infant Support
Supporting women, newborns and families in the first year after childbirth to help build strong and thriving families is a common-sense way to help new families in a critical time. Our bill will extend Medi-Cal coverage to expand a mother’s access to perinatal health workers who screen for postpartum depression, help with child nutrition and provide a warm handoff to a host of other social services. This offers crucial postpartum support to families and equips families with the resources they need to confront the challenges many parents face in the first year of parenthood.
Electric Roads for EV Wireless Charging
Addressing the climate crisis with urgency is common sense. It is a priority that requires creative solutions to make it easier and more convenient to stop relying on dirty and dangerous fossil fuels. Currently, state law makes it challenging and cumbersome for innovative solutions like electrified roads and parking lots to help reduce the “range anxiety” that prevents people from transitioning to electric vehicles. Additionally, the transition for buses and large heavy-duty vehicles to electric is challenging — requiring large batteries and lost work time due to recharging needs. Our bill will allow for innovative solutions that accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles in California, bringing us closer to a zero-emissions transportation sector.
These bills have all successfully passed out of committee with bipartisan support, and we have many more bills that offer common-sense solutions that we hope will get bipartisan support as well. Bills that will eliminate deductibles and reduce copays for many on Covered California health plans, transparency and accountability on local government homeless plans, protecting health care workers when they’re sick, removing red tape for homeless and affordable housing development, and home tax credits for veterans.
I am incredibly grateful to the thousands of people I was fortunate enough to meet on the campaign trail, who took the time to share their thoughts and ideas for making our communities even better places to live. Our future will not be served by partisan bickering, and I am excited to partner with you to deliver the bipartisan common-sense solutions that people here deserve.
Pilar Schiavo, D-Chatsworth, represents the 40th Assembly District, which includes most of the Santa Clarita Valley in addition to the northwest San Fernando Valley. “Democratic Voices” appears Tuesdays and rotates among local Democrats.