Name as it appears on the ballot: Elizabeth Parent
Party affiliation: Democrat
Campaign website: www.ElizabethParent.com
Occupation & employer: Host/Server at Eggs Up Grill
Years lived in North Carolina: 5 years
1. What in your background qualifies you to represent the people of North Carolina effectively? What would you cite as your three biggest career accomplishments?
The constitution says I am qualified. I am over 21 years old and I live in cvbdfgdfthe district. If our founding fathers wanted constant bickering at our capitals they would have added a clause requiring every member of the general assembly be an attorney. Our general assembly needs advocates, not attorneys. My life experience has built me to be an advocate for this district. I am frustrated with politics as usual and that motivates me as the younger generation to step up and lead. I am relentless, I am passionate and resilient. I was raised as part of a large homeschooling, Christian, conservative family on a farm in rural Washington state. So I know and value traditions, but my life experience has taught me the importance of being open to new ideas and new voices. I hold the values of a progressive democrat. The only way we can come to a solution is to be open to other perspectives. I intend to work across the aisle when elected because I am passionate about proactive policy and I believe that ultimately every politician is, but we’re seeing this constant divide because no one is willing to extend outside of their partisanship. I am willing to do that because that is how work gets done. North Carolinians deserve to have their voices heard and see results. My three biggest accomplishments would have to be, building the courage to tell my parents about the sexual abuse I experienced throughout my childhood and facing my abuser in the courtroom at 16 years old, becoming a mom at a young, while unwed and raising three of the most amazing young boys, being active in my community through MOMS Club a non-profit organization offering moms supports and through Artists Alliance of the Triangle offering artists support.
2. What do you believe to be the three most pressing issues facing the next General Assembly? What steps do you believe the state should take to address them?
When I was considering my candidacy many people told me to pick three key issues to use as my platform. We see many democratic politicians picking healthcare, education, and the environment. I chose to pick broad issues because I understand the position I’m running for. I understand that maybe only 10% of the legislation that will pass my desk may fit three specific categories. I want voters to know that I see the big picture and to see what I believe falls under each of my platform issues and where I stand on them – which, in an effort of transparency, is listed on my website www.ElizabethParent.com under the Issues tab. I will advance our public education, I will protect our individual rights & freedoms, and I will advocate for this district and our state through the out-of-control growth it is experiencing. I believe that truly listening to each and every individual is how we ensure our voices are heard clearly at our state capital. I have an open-door policy, and I will continue this policy when elected because that’s what true representation is. It doesn’t matter to me whether you have a D or an R next to your name, we all deserve a level of respect and I intend to lead with ethical excellence and integrity to ensure that every voice is heard. I have made an effort in my parenting to raise my boys to take responsibility, own the consequences and keep themselves accountable. It’s incredibly frustrating to see our elected officials behave in a way that is so polar opposite from the world in which we would like future generations to one day lead. We need to be open to new ideas, work together, and hold our elected officials accountable in order for our state to proactively progress.
3. To what extent do you support municipalities exerting local control over issues such as regulating greenhouse gas emissions, criminal justice reforms and police oversight, and passing development-regulating ordinances?
Our state is incorporated by some of the most amazing small municipalities. I find myself fortunate to live in Fuquay-Varina which is a booming small town. I will support legislative efforts to build optional incentives for municipalities and state organizations to hire Diversity, Equity & Inclusion personnel. I will also support legislative efforts to build optional incentives for municipalities & state organizations to create plans for regularly scheduled cultural assessments. I am also in favor of expanding the buffer zones surrounding our forests, wetlands & waterways to protect our natural environment from overdevelopment. I believe that there are ways municipalities can utilize rain gardens to offset stormwater run-off and I would like to advocate for them to be utilized.
4. Do you support raising North Carolina’s minimum wage, and if so by how much? If not, what other initiatives would you take to support low-income families in North Carolina?
I do support raising the minimum wage, $15 is the bare minimum that I would accept. I will support lower the cost of childcare. I will advocate for the state to provide a capped income home loan option, similar to Chapel Hill’s Community Home Trust.
5. With rent, property taxes, and home sale prices all rising, what, if anything, should the state legislature do to address this growing affordability crisis?
Again, I would advocate for the state to provide a capped income home loan option, similar to Chapel Hill’s Community Home Trust. In addition, I will support legislation to ban out-of-state buyers who have no intention of occupying the home as a primary residence. I believe that both of these are pieces of the affordable housing solution puzzle.
6. Do you believe that the state government has an obligation to prevent the impacts of climate change? If so, please state three specific policies you support to address climate change.
I absolutely do. I am in favor of North Carolina becoming energy independent. To me, that means that we utilize the renewable energy resources that we have, wind off our coast & and solar inland. Algae farming is one of the most effective ways to remove carbon from our atmosphere, I would like to advocate that our state utilize algae farming along our overpasses, and vertical structures such as parking garages.
7. Would you support an independent process for drawing new legislative and congressional districts?
Yes! Independent map drawing is essential to the success of our democracy.
8. Does the General Assembly have a constitutional obligation to comply with the state Supreme Court order in the Leandro case to fully fund public schools and give every child in North Carolina a sound basic education?
Yes, I believe that it is our state’s obligation to fulfill its promise to our citizens, our children being one of our more important demographics. Our children are our future and I believe that fully funding our public schools is vital to the success of the future of our state. If we are not investing in our children, then we are not investing in the future of our state. I support the Leandro ruling, and I will advocate ensuring that the state fulfills each of the recommendations brought by the WestEd study.
9. The U.S. Supreme Court may issue a ruling this summer that guts, or even overturns, Roe v. Wade. As a state lawmaker, would you support legislation that limits or prohibits abortion in North Carolina, or punishes/criminalizes abortion providers or patients?
I will not support legislative efforts to tell people what to do with their bodies. I became a mother at a young age and while unwed. I count my blessings that the father of my boys is the love of my life and my husband, but I recognize that not everyone is as fortunate to experience a similar situation. Having an abortion is a deeply personal choice. While I chose to not have an abortion, I am pro-choice and I will vote to uphold the reproductive rights and freedoms of women to make this decision on their own. I don’t believe that it’s my place, or any politicians place, to tell women what to do with their body.
10. Should North Carolina expand Medicaid? Where do you stand on increasing the number of slots for the Innovations Waiver for special needs individuals?
I support both the Medicaid expansion and increasing the number of slots for the Innovations Waiver. I hope that with a little more fine-tuning, we will see Medicare4All or a similar universal healthcare option in the near future.
11. Do you support reforming North Carolina’s marijuana laws? Do you support full legalization? Please explain your position.
Yes! I do support legalizing medical and recreational marijuana. I believe that by doing so, we may see a tax revenue increase like many we have seen many other states experience after legalizing marijuana which would help the state pay for necessary services like road maintenance, public safety, disaster response, and our already struggling public education.
12. Are there any issues this questionnaire has not addressed that you would like to address?
As a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, I will promote legislation to support the survivor of a crime with the right to a speedy trial, and protections for children in the courtroom. I have been diagnosed with PTSD, anxiety & depression due to my history as a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. I have greatly benefited from therapy. I will advocate for affordable & accessible mental health & wellness funding.
The NC state five year budget includes dissolving corporation taxes to 0% in the next five years to make North Carolina “more attractive” for corporations to relocate or franchise here. Clearly, our state is already attractive to corporations, and district 37 is feeling the effects of the mass growth caused by corporations. No corporation taxes means that in five years, we will have come close to exhausting funding for road maintenance, education, public safety, disaster response, and other public goods are no longer OR that funding for these services will be compensated by increasing YOUR tax dollars. I will vote to ensure that your taxes are low & that corporate taxes compensate.
I was raised on a farm and have fond memories of watching my dad take care of the honey beehive and watching my grandpa move our Angus cows from field to field. I spent many hours helping my sister milk our cow Nestle and helping my brother collect chicken eggs and clean the coop. My childhood instilled a respect for all farmers and taught me the importance of a sound work ethic. It is imperative that we protect, support & encourage our farmers & future farmers. With all the growth our district is experiencing, we have to find a way to advance our infrastructure without compromising our local farmers. I believe that this can be done by advocating for legislation to limit the ability of eminent domain over agricultural zoned & historic land.