Heather Bauer for SC State House 75
We can build a state where everyone is safe and secure, where the environment is protected, and where business and culture thrive.
The pandemic has shown that we all depend on each other regardless of race, religion, gender, or wealth. We can build a state that works for everyone, but that means getting back to basics. The idea is simple: The basic job of government is to ensure that basic needs are met. Only then can we build new futures for ourselves.
Free, high quality public education is a right of every child.
Public education is important to build thriving economies, strong communities, and individuals who believe they can make a difference. Education was my way out of poverty and I owe it to a system that invested in me. South Carolina’s public education has been on the wrong side of the ‘best of’ list for too long. Teachers are leaving the state because they do not feel like they are being treated as professionals and our children are underperforming because they are being tested like machines.
To ensure that all children in South Carolina receive the highest quality education, the government must stop putting their blind trust into testing companies and focus on real solutions.
When teachers are treated with respect, paid competitively, and have their voices listened to, they will be more inclined to stay in the field, thrive in the classroom and will provide better outcomes for their students. Retaining talent is always cheaper than hiring new. Respectively, when children are not treated like robots they are able to flourish and become strong, self-relying human beings.
Everyone needs to be safe.
Too many residents live in fear of crime, and too many neighborhoods suffer neglect. We must repair the relationship between citizens and law enforcement by extending and expanding the city’s ongoing efforts to promote community-based and service-oriented policing.
To improve communication and responsiveness, we should implement evidence-based programs for building trust and promoting empathy between the police and the people. Also, because not all calls actually involve violent emergencies, we should diversify and reform our first responders to prioritize service whenever possible. We need to expand our investments in victims’ services, rehabilitation, and mental health. We can imagine a new model of community safety that protects everyone.
A community where business thrives is a place where folks have steady jobs with livable wages.
Living wages are so important, especially to keep young talent. Like Nick, who I helped land his first tech job after completing The Iron Yard. Prior to attending my program, he had his bachelor’s degree in economics and the best job he could find was an internship that paid minimum wage. Like most parts of the country, we’re experiencing low employment with high underemployment.
Our District, City and State, sees businesses moving to neighboring cities. In order for our District to remain competitive, our representative must work with the City and County to address the high tax on micro and small businesses.
How many potholes have you hit? Have you ever been afraid to walk in your community because of lack of sidewalks?
South Carolina owns 70% of all roads in the state. While most South Carolinians may be able to afford to take their car in to get serviced every time an axel cracks or tire blows, many South Carolinians cannot. So they’re driving in unsafe cars on unkempt roads.
We need to stop funding secret and pet-projects of legislators and properly fund the South Carolina Department of Transportation. We need to hold the federal government and Congress accountable for funding our projects. Trust me, I know this isn’t an attractive topic, but millions of us use the roads every single day. Our economic impact from our crumbling infrastructure is huge.
Defending rights to abortion & bodily autonomy
Bodily autonomy is a human right. No government should interfere with the private healthcare decisions that patients make about their own bodies.
The vast majority of South Carolinians do not want to see the protections of Roe vs. Wade go away. And yet politicians in our state government are not brave enough to stand up to the extreme, vocal few who not only want to take away women's bodily autonomy but also your rights to privacy, contraception, and the right to marry whom we love - all rights linked to Roe vs. Wade.
The consequences of our state government taking away your right to an abortion would fall disproportionately on the poorest women in our state - women who have been abused, victims of incest, those who have been raped, and mothers who are struggling.
We need strong state legislators to stand up to this kind of government interference. I want to make this clear: I will not only fight for your right to bodily autonomy but will work to expand and improve care for pregnant people and young families.
Nearly 20% of all residents in the Columbia Metro area aren’t sure where their next meal is coming from.
Grocery stores are closing across Columbia and South Carolina. We must work to make options for residents for healthful, affordable, and high quality food in food deserts around the district and state. If we don’t, we are just passing the buck to the next department or government entity to deal with the problem.
We must be collaborative and work with organizations, investors, and entrepreneurs to rid South Carolina of food deserts and insecurities. No matter your political affiliation, no person should go hungry.
Everyone needs an advocate.
We all deserve a leader who shows up and is listening to what the concerns are. As your next State House Representative, I will be available, and attend neighborhood meetings to actively participate. As a Project Manager and client advocate at my job, I am tasked with working on a budget and on tight schedules to deliver the needed solutions. I’ll take these skills with me to the state house.
We must work with local boards and councils to make change in our district and for our state. That’s why I’ll lead the charge on creating an ad-hoc committee between Richland County State House Delegates, city and county councils. Together, we can work to be the advocate our citizens deserve.