COVID-19 Recovery

 

Dealing with this crisis and its aftermath requires effective leadership. The main priority in 2021 will be helping Massachusetts’ economy recover from Covid-19, and supporting and strengthening healthcare systems, schools, seniors and others affected by the disease as they navigate through this crisis.

 

A proven leader, Christina will be proactive in planning to rebuild our economy while protecting our citizens:

  • Support re-opening businesses and encourage new businesses with incentives based on the numbers of employees hired. 

  • Encourage businesses to continue to allow employees to work from home when feasible, continuing social distancing and reducing traffic and pollution levels.

  • Massachusetts clearly needs its own stockpile of PPE, ventilators, and other healthcare equipment. Create a stockpile and incentivize businesses to manufacture necessary equipment here in the Commonwealth.

  • All Massachusetts residents need access to healthcare.  Massachusetts must take steps to enroll anyone left out of the system.

  • Task the Dept. of Elementary and Secondary Education to create online curricula for every subject and every grade level, including special needs accommodations. Ensure that every community in Massachusetts has access to the internet, and that every school family has access to a computer or tablet.

  • Require all senior housing, assisted living, and nursing homes to report any cases of Covid-19, and immediately test all employees and residents regardless of symptoms.

  • Safeguard elections by instituting a Vote-by-Mail system.

  • Support our essential workers now and into the future with a living wage, comprehensive healthcare, and sick leave.

 

Protecting our environment

 

It is time for lawmakers on all levels to take immediate and aggressive action to address climate change. As your representative, Christina will support transformative solutions that will reduce carbon emissions and bring green jobs to the commonwealth.

 

Putting science before politics, Christina will advocate for:

  • Creating a viable roadmap to a net zero carbon economy by 2050.

  • Accelerating the development of off-shore wind power.

  • Lifting the cap on net solar metering for increased investment in solar infrastructure.

  • Highlighting the need for clean energy not just renewable energy. Burning biomass is not an effective solution to addressing climate change.

  • Environmental justice, because it is a fundamental human right to have clean air and clean water.

Helping our Seniors

 

Christina is committed to helping seniors age in place, ensuring that there is safe and affordable senior housing, and protecting seniors from elder abuse and fraud. As board member of the Boxford COA and primary caretaker of an elderly family member, Christina understands the need for immediate action to help seniors in our community.

 

Recognizing the importance of aging with dignity and security, Christina will advocate for:

  • Senior Housing, Assisted Living, and Nursing Homes must have an emergency pandemic plan approved by the state. All employees and residents must be tested, and arrangements must be in place to isolate and care for affected residents.

  • Increasing property tax deferrals for seniors

  • Strengthening the state’s Council on Aging (COA) program to provide more services that will help seniors age in place.

  • Improving the quality and affordability of senior housing by revamping and enforcing the senior housing bill of rights

Preserving the Merrimack River

 

Every year, hundreds of millions of gallons of raw sewage overflow from sewage treatment facilities, directly into the Merrimack River, exposing our district to health risks. Beyond sewage, PFAS (toxic “forever chemicals” from industrial sites), pollutants in stormwater runoff, and solid waste, are threatening the health of this vital river. 

As former Executive Director of the Merrimack River Watershed Council, Christina is uniquely qualified to advocate for the Merrimack River to a healthy state. As your Representative, Christina will fight for:

  • Implementing a comprehensive water testing program, to give a clear picture of contaminant hot spots and potential health risks;

  • Working with federal authorities to invest in wastewater capacity upgrades.

  • Strictly limit PFAS levels in the river and provide state environmental agencies with the resources they need to effectively enforce violations

  • Creating stormwater credits to create and maintain greenways along the riverbanks, which act as natural filters to stormwater pollutants.

 Bringing Affordable and Reliable Transportation to Our District 

Decades of inaction and short term cost saving measures have caused our transit infrastructure to be at a point of crisis. Particularly in our district, there is very little in the way of affordable and convenient transportation, leading to an untenable commute into Boston. Revamping our transportation system would give countless hours back to commuters, lower our carbon footprint, and bring jobs to the Commonwealth. 

Recognizing that improved public transportation MUST be part of any pandemic stimulus, Christina will advocate for:

  • Electrifying trains and busses to reduce carbon emissions

  • Expanding regional transit, and increasing the frequency of trains

  • Encouraging regional bus systems (like the Merrimack Valley Regional Transit Authority) to coordinate with train schedules 

  • Making fares accessible and not cost prohibitive

  • Making public transportation reliable and a real alternative to driving.

Keeping our Community Healthy and Safe

While the focus has been on Covid-19, our community continues to face other threats to our health and safety.  Christina will keep the focus on:

  • Protecting women’s healthcare rights, including the right to choose.

  • Protect families from domestic abuse.

  • End the sale of vaping devices to youth.

  • Regulate sober houses, and increase access to fight opioid addiction.

  • Protect companion animals (pets) when their owners are incapacitated.

  • Advocate for common sense gun safety laws, including running criminal records checks before private gun sales, analyzing data on crime guns, and requiring live fire training for gun licenses.

Supporting and Improving Public Education

 

The Student Opportunity Act was an important milestone, and its funding needs to be protected in a

post-pandemic world. For our district, Christina will:

 

  • Push for 100% funding of Regional School Transportation, a major expense for our school districts.

  • Fight to fully fund Special Education programs

  • Encourage the DESE to create online curricula for emergency situations.

  • Study the effect of suspending the MCAS testing, and explore alternatives to the current grade 3-10 MCAS system.

Standing Behind our Workers

The wage gap is still growing and we need to reverse that trend.  The pandemic has taught us how essential workers truly are to our economy and our health, and we need to make sure they participate in the benefits of their labor.  A union member (Writers Guild of America), Christina will:

  • Stand up for workers’ rights, including living wages, healthcare, pension benefits, sick leave, and the right to organize.

  • Hold strong against any attempt to weaken the Prevailing Wage Law, or the Taxpayer Protection Act (Pacheco Law).

  • Encourage green new jobs with incentives for hiring and training employees.

CONTACT US

Phone: 978-766-2523

Candidate Email: christina@eckertforrep.com

Campaign Manager: josh@eckertforrep.com

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