POLICY FOR THE PEOPLE

On the Issues

Seniors

I am the granddaughter of a Navy Carpenter who built bases in the Pacific during WWII; of poor tenant farmers who clung to each other during the Great Depression; a truck driver with his own business; a dental hygienist; and at least one Rosie the Riveter. Their struggles, their triumphs, and their wisdom created the woman I am today. Stories are how we preserve our humanity and our seniors are the holder of our stories. That why we must:

  • Create new programs to improve the standards of living for all seniors, especially during the pandemic.

  • Ensure that seniors are not forced out of their homes due to rising taxes and housing costs.

  • Increased investment in accessible housing for seniors and persons with disabilities.

  • Increase funding for non-profit entities that serve our residents so well, especiall the Council on Aging.

Veterans

During Operation Iraqi Freedom, Teresa served as an Intelligence Analyst for the Air Combat Command. Her husband Ken served with honor as a Marine Corp Ammunition Specialist.  As Veterans from military families, Teresa and Ken have seen first hand what life after service can entail. Our fellow patriots are more likely to suffer from mental illness, to commit suicide, and to struggle to readjust to a civilian society. Our Veterans Administration has improved over the last 10 years but there is much more progress to be made. As a veteran serving as our next State Representation, Teresa will: 

  • Ensure all veterans are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve by the Commonwealth.

  • Increase funding for younger veterans who are raising children and struggling to adjust to civilian life.

  • Increase housing options for veterans struggling to find a place to call home.

  • Advocate for every veteran struggling to obtain services they were guaranteed by our Commonwealth and Nation.

Healthcare

Healthcare is a human right and many Billerica families are struggling during this global pandemic to hold on to some kind of health insurance. COVID-19 has proven to us once and for all, we need to guarantee healthcare to everyone in the Commonwealth. To make sure no one is turned away for inability to pay every again, we must: 

  • Expand and provide free COVID-19 testing kits to all municipal Boards of Health to make available.

  • Increase funding and accessibility to critical and long-term mental health services.

  • Cap rising pharmaceutical prices and index the cap to inflation.

  • End out-of-pocket costs, like copays and deductibles, for working families.

  • Guarantee healthcare to everyone by transitioning to a Medicare-for-All style system.

Opioid Epidemic

The opioid epidemic continues here in Billerica and the Merrimack Valley. Substance use disorder can only be solved with support and quality health care, including housing for those in recovery and treatment beds for those struggling, not incarceration. To fight this crisis, we must:

  • Educate youth about addiction and identify and support students at risk.

  • Educate doctors about safer prescription management and eliminate prescription marketing.

  • Increase the availability of the overdose reversal agent Naloxone (Narcan).

  • Increase access to prevention and long-term treatment.

  • Expand funding for counseling and support for the children and families of loved ones struggling with S.U.D.

Environment

Even as we fight a global pandemic on one front, we are confronted with a global climate crisis which must also be battled with immediacy.  There are solutions we can make happen right here in Massachusetts that fight climate change and help protect our watersheds and conservation lands. To make impactful change, we must:

  • Power Massachusetts' electric grid with 100% renewable energy by 2035.

  • Transition heating & transportation to 100% renewable energy by 2045.

  • Divest public money from fossil fuels, including from the state pension fund and public university endowments.

  • Increase funding to protect and restore our public lands and watersheds from pollution and climate impact.

  • Pass the Massachusetts Green New Deal.

Economic Justice

Economic justice means fighting for the middle class and working families of Billerica. We can only have economic justice when our rights as workers are protected. That’s why we must:

  • Raise the minimum wage and index it to inflation so that wages rise with the cost of living, as intended.

  • End the sub-minimum wage for service workers so that they can access living wages.

  • Increase overtime protections and stop wage theft.

  • Protect and expand collective bargaining rights and the right to unionize.

  • Lower taxes for the middle class and working families while ensuring those at the top pay their fair share.

Reproductive Justice

Every human being should have full agency over their own bodies. We must do everything we can to live up to that ideal and to protect our rights to make informed decisions about our own health and bodies. In order to be informed, we must have access to education about bodies based on science. To do that, we must:

  • Ensure young people gain the knowledge and skills they need to make healthy decisions about their relationships and their future by passing the Healthy Youth Act.

  • Protect safe access to abortion services by removing unnecessary, burdensome laws that delay and deny reproductive care by passing the ROE Act.

  • Increased funding for access to contraception, assisted reproductive services, and HIV testing and care.

Racial Justice

What kind of people do we want to be for our children and generations to come? Do we want to continue to allow divisions over the use of racial stereotypes stop us from doing what's right? Will we step up to dismantle the systemic racism plaguing our Nation? Yes, racism is a public health crisis. Black Lives Matter and Indigenous Lives Matter. That why we must:

  • Examine all of our existing systems and eliminate biases and targeted racism where they exist.

  • Dismantle the school to prison pipeline, so that our children can grow up to live into their dreams.

  • Pass An Act Prohibiting the Use of Native American Mascots by Public Schools in the Commonwealth so that we can finally end the use of harmful stereotypes of Indigenous people as mascots.

Government Accountability & Transparency

Every constituent should be able to understand the legislative process and how to find how their legislators voted on various legislation. I'd say, it's our birthright to have an open and transparent government. That's why I signed the Voters Deserve to Know Pledge. To uphold a strong commitment to accountability and transparency, we must:

  • Make committee votes and testimony public, and improve our public records laws. We are the only state in the country where the House, Senate, and Governor are all exempt from public records requests.

  • Meet with all constituents, because I cannot make an informed decision without hearing from everyone.

  • Pass An Act Promoting Equality and Respect in the Legislature, creating an independent commission to investigate sexual harassment and other workplace allegations on Beacon Hill.

Pandemic Relief

It has becoming increasingly clear that we may not get the help we need from the Federal Government. It's up to us to ensure that Billerica's families are able to find relief and recovery from the pandemic. We cannot let renters, home owners, and small business owners bare the brunt while big corporations are getting billions in bailout money. To do that we must:

  • Expand unemployment benefits so that people can be secure in having essential needs met.

  • Ensure all COVID-19 related healthcare costs are completely covered for working people and families.

  • Freeze evictions, while providing relief to landlords and freezing mortgage payments, providing relief to homeowners.

  • Increase funding for public-private partnerships to support local food banks and community pantries.

  • Create a grant program for small businesses to recoup financial loss due to pandemic closures.

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Teresa English

- STATE REPRESENTATIVE -

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Paid for by the Committee to Elect Teresa English
Randy Wanamaker, Treasurer | Meredith Lovell, Chair

P. O. Box 80
N. Billerica, MA 01862


billerica@voteteresaenglish.org

(978) 226-3190