Over this two week district work period, I have nearly 50 meetings and events scheduled and plan on meeting with well over 200 constituents across our region. We have gotten off to a great start.
On Monday in the Issaquah office, I met Roja Boyapati and his family, Kitty Barran and her two boys, local representatives from Save the Children Network, members of Americans for Refugees and Immigrants, and constituents Daniel and Wendi Gall. We covered issues ranging from immigration reform, investing in children’s education and wellbeing here and around the world, health care, and much more.
On Tuesday, I enjoyed getting out of the office and visiting constituents around the western side of the district. I had the pleasure of meeting with Polaris in Covington, World Relief Seattle in Kent, and the King County Sexual Assault Resource Center in Renton. We had important discussions about affordable housing, supporting victims of sexual assault, and helping vulnerable populations.
On Tuesday, in celebration of National Telecommunicators Week, I had the opportunity to visit the King County 9-1-1 Communications Center to meet and thank some of the individuals on the front lines keeping us safe.
As children, we memorize the number 9-1-1 before our home phone or parents’ phone numbers. We know that when we are in danger we can call this number and help will come, but we do not always think about the individuals who are on the receiving side of the call. Today and every day, they deserve our gratitude and praise.
This week I also had a great meeting with members of my Youth Advisory Board. We had a meaningful discussion about my priorities in the 115th Congress, working with the new administration, and how social media impacts the political climate. I always enjoy hearing the perspectives of our younger generations and I look forward to meeting with this group again soon!
On Wednesday, I was back in the office meeting with constituents, who came to discuss a wide range of issues including health care, public education funding, federal labor laws, and more. Thanks to Connie Fletcher with the Washington State Board of Education, Chief Medical Officer at Valley Cities Counseling Dr. Allender, and members of the American Federation of Government Employees for stopping by!
Thursday morning I made my way over the Cascades to the eastern side of the district. There, I visited the Cashmere Rotary club meeting, discussed health care reform with Doug Gann of Wenatchee, met with members of Life Choices of Wenatchee, discussed the importance of protecting the environment with constituents from Wenatchee and Entiat, and sat down with members of the Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility.
Increasing Opportunities for Foster Youths
We cannot eliminate all of the challenges faced by youth in foster care, but we can give them opportunities to help overcome those challenges. The Improving Employment Outcomes for Foster Youth Act, which I was proud to introduce with Rep. Danny Davis (D-IL), will help do just this. It makes transition age foster youth eligible for the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC), an existing federal credit that provides incentives to businesses to hire employees from certain populations with specific employment challenges. In doing so, this bill will help encourage employers to hire and invest in our nation’s foster youth, starting them on a successful career path.
Easter Sunday is a celebration of our risen Savior who sacrificed himself to give us eternal life. No matter your beliefs, we can all be grateful to the people around us and those who came before us who sacrificed so much for the good of all people. To everyone celebrating, I wish you a very blessed and happy Easter.