The Role of Public Safety
The need to protect and enhance our public safety budgets and to properly provide for the safety and families of our public safety officers has been made clear by the recent outburst of violence in Seattle. Just a few short blocks from my house, 5 people were gunned down in a café, highlighting the critical importance of emergency responders. I will be out talking about this -- not only in my campaign, but during the Legislative Session and budget discussions. I will be reminding people not to forget recent events in discussing the need to meet staffing, response and equipment standards.
Protecting Public Employees
I know the sacrifices -- from health and risk of loss of life through family stress -- that our public safety employees give for the public. We need to stand up for the pensions that are part of the agreement that society has with our fire fighters and police officers, and which have been earned and need to be protected. I know those sacrifices and stresses from my brother who has been a police officer, and I went to work to protect and honor those commitments to those pensions in my first Session in the Legislature.
I have already emphasized the need for our State and local governments to stop attempting to balance budgets on the backs of public safety and other public employees. Providing for increased, stable revenue is the only way to responsibly fund crucial state and local services. Today is a reminder for us to be urging that we provide the respect and appreciation for those we rely on when we are in danger.