4Congress 4Oregon 2nd US Congressional District/Democrat
4Congress 4Oregon 2nd US Congressional District/Democrat
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The fact about government really helping people? People perceived with disabilities are routinely kept out of most public policy. People in poverty are stigmatized and ignored.
These are the people I pledge to work for every day.
Jack (as Union County "Commish") talks about coffee, first names, political processes, healthcare access, and gives credit to who really gets stuff done... all while showing off his ugly socks ...
One example I like to use, to emphasize how theory (especially in policy budgeting) has to be practical, has to do with my early months in law school: one late night, I ran into a scene in front of my law school, where I happened to meet some homeless men. These men were just surviving, and seemed to be a world apart from my studies…and I didn’t want that gap to become permanent. The next week, I spent parts of my nights on the streets of Tacoma to see what was happening there. As a result, in addition to my first year of legal studies, I also wrote stories (the first I'd ever written for a newspaper) about what I found on the streets, the heating vents, and in the local rescue missions. Since then, as part of a team managing our $40 million dollar county budget, those same priorities of public service are with me. As a County Commissioner, I advocated for the need to try and build system capacity for addressing poverty without labeling people. One solution I was proud of was to set up a “red flag” system, based on getting social services alerted, coordinated, and of help, when people were falling behind on their property taxes: all while maintaining the competing interests of protecting property values, fair taxation and even privacy issues. If I had to summarize what these experiences mean to me: never give up on anyone’s right to be more free, more self-empowered.
Disabilities advocacy is in my heart. My own experience with a dear cousin began when I began to visit him in a state institution. We've come a long ways since then, as a society. But the test is not all about what can be done "for" people with perceived disabilities. It's about respecting every person's civil freedoms to make their OWN choices.
When I first ran for elective office, my first meeting spoke to my priorities: a meeting regarding a proposed nursing home closure. My first requests for meetings as a Congressional candidate are to meet with a group advocating independent living, and with groups of Eastern Oregonians who have lived in shadows of discrimination.
In addition to hiring staff that includes EVERY Oregonian, and with a focus on our airport infrastructure: I know from my work as a County Commissioner....
Rural Oregon needs a fighter who (as Rep. Walden has) will help secure payments to counties, on federal land use and re-authorize secure rural schools funds.
I often mention how my interests that developed in the last several years are in health, housing, and addressing poverty as a matter of social indicators: in such a wealthy nation, our sense of personal illness, and mental health risks (especially to our opportunity youth) has probably never been so profound.
One thing I've learned in this regard is to ask how we can be available, for people to make real decisions that are self-empowering. That's why I've served on several boards (the State IL board, Board of County Commissioners, Vice Chair for the housing authority, national commissioner for NAHRO...and pardon the acronyms)...that are all about self-advocacy and reaching for true, meaningful equity and inclusion. As an elected official, this is the key aspect of transparency...and with growing complexity, transparency struggles to be clearly communicated as we talk policy. I am very strongly committed to better understanding of to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion as a lifelong process; that is, the markers of real democratic higher education. Learning about health policy, as a human right, is also a core competency: it means problem solving and team work, a commitment to a vision and also skills building.
My approach to achieving goals, really rests on the idea that transparency works (benefits our values) if we at least take risks: where, as an example, a proposed 500 mile power across five counties was viewed as a political “third rail,” and too risky to address, I argued public involvement could only add light. It took six months, but we ultimately convened a wide-ranging citizens panel, to help multiply technical resources on a highly complex task that we would otherwise have received any appropriate public comments on. As a result, we convened several public hearings, and gave voice to literally hundreds of citizens, while producing detailed fact sheets we would not have been able to generate. So while (real) transparency in a system is ultimately healthy, it also is worth noting the public qua public is not always in the position to shepherd transparency as a process. I want to do that, and public policy is fundamental to that equity and transparency...and loops me back to what I said, first, about self-empowerment. The bottom line is that transparency without actually engaging diversity, equity, and inclusion means transparency is only opaque. I hope to keep cleaning that policy lens.
*Seattle University School of Law Juris Doctor *Masters of Science, Emergency Services *Masters of Arts, Admin Justice, CSU *BA, History WWU
A recent project I’ve worked on has been useful in making this point: the search for “T-shaped” skills: especially, T-shaped skills. My task was based in helping to refine a doctoral candidate's thesis. She brought the advantage of having been a CEO for a tech start-up that had been purchased by IBM. The idea is to blend breadth of abstract learning skills and abilities with organizational basics: when should we address STEM needs? It’s a good start in terms of blending abilities with opportunities, too. It's about real recognition of radical abilities. Within these ideal learning rights (and in the case of T-shaped learning, a construct of abilities), there are still going to be gaps and breaks in the terrain of cognition….gaps are not just obstacles, though. These are the leaps where great faith in students, worker training, communication and learning are made.
Why Vote For Jack?
I don't expect you to agree with everything I say or propose. But I'm also not going to pander to you and tell you you're always right, either.
I led the successful local fight for term limits because the American system has become too elite, too entrenched.
Forest management: let's try the Utah model and see if our yields can be increased, closer to home, for better local management and jobs.
Fully support expansion of the phenomenally successful Low-Income Tax Credits to the Middle Income Families of America...
If America abandons Israel, we abandon the most stable force for enduring peace and development in the East: worst of all, betraying the Jewish homeland may repeat horrors of almost unimaginable genocide
I helped lead local adoption of the wonderful Stepping Up initiative to address mental health issues in local jails, while working with the wonderful GOBHI program to identify funding for a local program to help address those needs.
Within my first year as your Congressman, I will deliver on this promise: to accelerate and enhance our regional airport structure, a new Inland Port facility, which is the single largest key to long-range economic development.
I truly cherish these glasses: as a single dad, I'm still raising two wonderful kids, who mean the world to me. Along the way, I have had some tough times. I was still more blessed than far too many people---I was able to be at home, most of the time, writing and researching, for all kinds of clients. There's no easy way to balance work with child-rearing. But I also needed help sometimes. The kids told me recently, they didn't know how poor we were. Those glasses were paid for under OHP insurance. So, what do you think about any idea or possibility that I won't fight to protect the needy from medical cuts?
Why, you'd need new glasses if you thought that.
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Jack Howard believes politics is about listening to every citizen: EVERYONE.
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1809 Adams Avenue, La Grande, Oregon 97850, United States