By Hilda E. Santiago
This year has been a challenge for all of us. As we continue to work through this pandemic, who you choose to represent you in the General Assembly is more important than ever. I have had the honor of representing Meriden's 84th Assembly District for the past eight years. I have continued to operate under the same fundamental principle as my predecessor, former Speaker of the House Chris Donovan, that everyone should be treated with "Fairness, Dignity and Respect." In doing so, I have been able to build the strong coalitions necessary to address the issues that matter most to Meriden residents. These issues include good paying jobs, expanding access to healthcare and quality education for all children.
I am proud of my work while in office. I have supported the establishment of a Paid Family and Medical Leave Program because workers should not have to choose between caring for a loved one and their job. Due to COVID, caring for a loved one is something many of us can have experienced. Those working a full-time job also deserve to earn a fair wage, one where their most basic living needs can be met. That is why I voted to increase the state's minimum wage to $15 per hour.
Access to healthcare has always been a priority. I voted to codify federal legislation protecting individuals with pre-existing conditions, ensuring their protection if the Affordable Care Act is repealed. Pre-existing conditions can make it impossible for individuals to secure healthcare. As caregiver for my mother, I understand the healthcare challenges seniors face. This is why I voted to cap the cost of insulin and allowed for expanded care through telehealth services, keeping seniors safe and away from the threats of COVID.
In addition to voting on legislation, my job as state representative also includes serving as a liaison between city residents and state agencies. I have helped secure PPE for businesses, helped residents with their applications for unemployment and social services and maneuver the new procedures established by many state agencies due to the current pandemic. This is the most rewarding part of my job as your State Representative. I am committed to my community, easily accessible and always available to listen to the concerns of city residents. I am happy to work with you on issues brought up through our discussions at the Green, grocery store or community gatherings.
I look forward to continuing my job as your advocate and humbly ask for your vote this election. If you have questions for me, the absentee ballot process or aren’t sure where you vote, please call me at (203) 600-9442. Whether your plan is to vote by absentee or in person, just be sure your voice is heard loud and clear — VOTE.
Democrat Hilda E. Santiago is seeking re-election in the 84th House District.