360 Degree livability
Raising the minimum wage is a good start, but not enough to help people stop living on the knife edge of poverty.
There is more to do.
Minimum wages are only part of a total solution to end poverty.
I don't know if you've noticed, but the cost of living is going up. I am proud to belong to the party which fought to raise the minimum wage in Washington State, but wages are only part of the solution when you look at what is needed to help people become and remain financially stable.
If you are working 40 hours a week, you should NOT be living on the knife edge of poverty. This has to stop.
To this end, I champion the concept of 360 Degree Livability. Livable wages + access to affordable housing + reliable public transportation + affordable healthcare = 360 Degree Livability.
Think about it. If you have to spend over half your wages in rent, how are you able to save up money for a rainy day. Working with my colleagues to create innovative ways to incentivize the creation of affordable housing solutions is a top priority. I know there is a way to find a compromise which works for citizens, local governments, and developers. We just have to be willing to come together and find it.
Not everybody can afford a car. Not everybody wants to drive all the time. We live in a unique district. We aren't a small town anymore but we don't seem to have the ridership demand of a large city. I think finding way to increase transit hours in communities like the TriCities is a key part of helping residents trying to get their feet on the ground to thrive. Nobody should be unable to get or keep a job because they are unable to get to and from work in a timely and affordable manner. Now...about healthcare...