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Education:

Arkansas needs well educated residents to compete for economic opportunities in the United States and around the world.  I support the governor’s goal of having 60 percent of state residents holding a postsecondary credential by 2020. Working with my fellow legislators, I want to increase quality childcare and early learning programs which benefit our preschool children and working families. I will oppose reducing funds to public education and sending public dollars to schools that do not serve all children. Teachers should be given the tools they need to successfully educate our future generations. This includes competitive salaries, benefits, and adequate resources to provide quality instruction. Quality public education is the best way to ensure a bright future for all Arkansans.

Healthcare:

The reality is that everyone will at some point need healthcare. As a healthcare professional I took a pledge to do no harm--so to me, denying healthcare isn’t ethical.  Everyone must be able to get the healthcare they need. The answer to the current healthcare crisis cannot be entirely answered by the state, but I will do all I can at the state level to support healthcare for all. I will work to protect children, elderly, and the working Arkansans who rely upon Medicaid. I pledge to work to contain healthcare costs for families and businesses. I will support healthcare that is affordable, accessible, and inclusive covering dental and mental health care.

Economic Development:

I am committed to policies that promote responsible business growth and provide well-paying jobs for workers and their families. My goal is to raise the minimum wage so that all Arkansans have the resources to raise their families and live lives of dignity. I want to encourage companies to create or expand jobs for Arkansans and promote American-made products. Our community does not have many job opportunities within it, most people travel outside the district for work and shopping. I want to encourage small businesses in this community so we can buy goods and services closer to home, supporting our local economy. Promoting local business increases our tax revenue and that would allow for better services to our community such as Fire/EMS services, police, schools, city water and road improvement.

Poverty:

It is an unfortunate reality that one in five children in northwest Arkansas is hungry or lacks reliable access to enough food. The expenses associated with healthcare, quality pre-K education, student loans and national debt are crushing the middle class and driving those in poverty further into the cycle. The income disparities prevalent throughout Arkansas are also apparent in our district. I will work to continue funding for comprehensive school nutrition programs. We should be working to increase the use of evidence based strategies to break the poverty cycle. All Arkansans benefit when those in poverty have an enhanced chance to contribute to our state’s economy.

Taxes:

Taxes should be fair and produce the least burden upon the citizens while still funding needed services such as education, healthcare, public safety and infrastructure. I believe that we must focus on tax policy that is fair to working families and maintains a balanced state budget.

Why I am running as a Democrat:

I believe in putting people ahead of corporate profit. I am driven by compassion, and I value education and healthcare for everyone. I believe in science and well thought out decisions.  The Arkansas Democratic Party’s platform generally reflects my positions. However, when elected, I pledge to think for myself and consider first what is best for my constituents. Let’s elect a nurse, not an entrenched politician, someone who listens and cares, someone who is willing to get out into the community, work hard, and find out what this district needs. I pledge to serve with honesty and integrity, to do what is right and just, fighting for government accountability and transparency on both sides of the aisle.

 



Committee to Elect Celeste Williams
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