Wendy Carrillo, who is running unopposed for reelection this year as NELA’s State Assemblymember, spoke in April with an Eagle Rock audience about her work in Sacramento and plans for next term.
The event was hosted by Michael Nogueira, the president of the Eagle Rock Chamber of Commerce, and his wife, Eugenie Nogueira, at their home.
Within a month of taking office in a special election last December, Ms. Carrillo had co-authored a bill to provide money for legal services for immigrants affected by the Trump administration’s cancellation of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haitians, Nicaraguans and Salvadorans. The bill is now advancing through committees.
Other bills by Ms. Carrillo are also advancing through the process. These include two that would provide more outdoor experiences for schoolchildren and a package of bills introduced with other lawmakers to address the toxic legacy of lead paint in homes.
Ms. Carrillo related her positions on issues to her personal experiences. On TPS and other immigration issues, her views are shaped by her own story as someone who came to the United States as the undocumented child of undocumented Salvadoran immigrants.
On education, she recalled the overcrowding she experienced in the district’s public schools which contributed to her dropping out of high school at one point. She called for a “critical overlook of an entire system that has failed our kids.”
Several audience members raised concerns with Ms. Carrillo about charter schools, saying that the charters are mis-spending taxpayer money and manipulating test scores. Ms. Carrillo said that it is important to bring all parties to the charter-vs-public school debate together, with an aim of restoring the original purpose of charter schools as places where new teaching and learning methods could be tested before being rolled out more broadly. She said it was important to hear from parents who support charter schools, while emphasizing her support for traditional public schools.
On a question about homelessness, Ms. Carrillo noted that rent control needed to be part of the mix of solutions. On health care, she identified affordability as a problem to be addressed for middle class families as well as low income families.
It’s a big agenda, and it’s hers to achieve.