The League of Women Voters 2018 Voters’ Guide Q & A with Jane Garibay:

Q. What, if any, specific steps will you take to address inequalities facing women in our state?

A. The challenges women face come down to economic opportunity and are disproportionately disadvantaged. I support the ban the box measure, expanding access to tax credits and low-interest loans to women owned small businesses and paid family medical leave, because having a child should not be a barrier for economic success.

We also need to take on the pervasive culture of sexual harassment and assault which, while disproportionately impacting women, is a matter of dignity for all people. I support the Time’s Up Act, affirmative consent legislation, and measures that increase protections and resources for victims. I will also safeguard a women’s right to choose and access reproductive services and healthcare.

Q. What should government do, if anything, to provide an equitable, quality public education for all children pre-K through grade 12?

A. We need to ensure that every child in Connecticut receives a world class education. I think we can evaluate ways that the ECS formula can be made more equitable, as well as fully funding it. In the several decades it has existed it has rarely ever been fully funded. That has to change. We also should be expanding access to a diverse range of training programs that prepare students at a younger age for the jobs of Connecticut’s future. If we provide students with a good public education it makes opportunity available to everyone, regardless of your economic circumstances. I will fight for our students and will use my experience as former President of my local Board of Education and Co-chair of the School Business Partnership to do so.

Q. In building a vibrant economy in our state, would you emphasize reforming tax policies, addressing income inequality, or something else?

A. I believe in all of the above. We first have to look to the long-term future of our state and invest in the education and training that students so desperately need to meet the job demands of the future. We have a growing manufacturing base here in Connecticut, and we can attract companies by fostering a high skilled workforce. I will use my nearly 20 years of experience as executive director of the Windsor Chamber of Commerce to bring businesses together with education to promote and fund the job training programs our state desperately needs. I also believe we can be expanding tax credits to small businesses, and reducing property taxes for CT residents, putting more money in their pockets and allowing our economy to grow.

Q. What steps, if any, should be taken to curb gun violence in our state?

A. CT has some of the strongest gun laws in the country, and I believe in common sense measures to reduce gun violence. I respect the second amendment, and have a pistol permit myself, which is why I know that gun ownership is a responsibility. Banning untraceable ghost guns is the first step Connecticut should take, and it will be a priority when I get into office. Keeping guns out of the hands of domestic abusers is also critical, and I will support any measures that do so.