Let’s Make Springfield

Work For Working People

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Ann is running to fix the problems in Illinois that are impacting working families. Too many of our neighbors are being forced to leave and we cannot wait any longer.

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Simply put, I want to do the work needed to fix the problems in our state that are impacting working families.

After my father suffered life-altering injuries from a plane crash when I was 7 years old, my family experienced the severe economic impact that comes with unexpected medical costs and lost earnings. Our family’s savings were wiped out and we lost our house. We lived paycheck-to-paycheck, my mother sometimes going without to make sure my sisters and I had lunch at school.

Despite those hardships, my sisters and I were able to earn college degrees because at that time there was a social safety net in place that helped working families pull themselves out of hard times. Today, families like ours would likely be stuck in low-paying jobs for generations because those programs have been significantly scaled back.

I believe the solution to Illinois’ financial issues isn’t drastic service cuts. Instead, the answer is to invest in the people of Illinois. 

When I ran a large production facility in Mount Prospect we faced the decision of whether to stay in Illinois or move to a state offering big tax breaks and lower wages. We chose to stay in Mount Prospect because Illinois is a transportation hub with a strong, stable workforce. Investment in people and infrastructure are the keys to drive the growth we need.

  • Investing in world-class public schools throughout our district — it’s been proven to be one of the best investments for a thriving economy. We need to think of education not only in terms of our schools but also as robust job training programs that support 21st century jobs and entice businesses to move to Illinois. And we need to start with early childhood education so everyone is ready to learn.
  • Fixing our health care system to ensure hard-working families get a fair deal – affordable and comprehensive health care services, including mental health and addiction services. That also includes making sure all women have access to full reproductive health services without government interference in treatment options.
  • We must invest in infrastructure that not only improves our citizens’ quality of life, but incorporates environmentally sustainable solutions. Illinois must remain the transportation hub of the country, creating good construction jobs and drawing businesses of all types.
  • We need stable government funding that ensures millionaires and billionaires pay their fair share rather than putting the biggest burden on hard working families. World-class education cannot be sustained through a funding mechanism that is dependent almost exclusively on property taxes. The state’s partners in delivering crucial services need a funding structure they can depend on.
  • Our state economy needs to benefit all citizens of Illinois. Yes, we want a strong business community, but not at the expense of Illinois residents. Failing to support livable wages for workers — at the same time social services are being cut — is a recipe for disaster that no set of business incentives will solve.
Ann Gillespie, Democrat for Illinois Senate District 27
Early Vote starts March 5.   Election Day is Tuesday, March 20.
Ann Gillespie for Illinois State Senate 27th District August 10, 2017