Priorities

“I am committed to bringing new ideas to our state and legislation to improve the lives of our citizens.”

Gun Violence

We need common sense gun laws, including universal background checks, and surveys confirm that most voters support such legislation. Sheila’s daughter was shot while attending a house party. Fortunately, her daughter survived, but this experience has made Sheila a vocal champion for gun safety laws in the commonwealth.

Women’s Rights

Women’s rights are under attack in this country, and Virginia is no exception. It is crucial to win more seats in our state legislature. Bills affecting a woman’s right to choose will be on the ballot next year, and we must protect a woman’s right to make her own medical decisions.

Additionally, the Equal Rights Amendment needs only one more state to ratify it — another reason why we need to flip VA blue this November.

The Environment

Offshore drilling must be off limits in the commonwealth; I will co-sponsor legislation on day one of the next session to ensure that our coastline remains beautiful and oil spill free.

With reports that at least seventeen public schools in Chesterfield County have dangerous levels of lead in the drinking water, it is outrageous that Chesterfield County residents do not even have access to safe drinking water—Sheila will make clean water and air one of her top priorities for her legislative agenda.

Unlike Virginia Republicans, Sheila also strongly believes climate change represents an existential threat to Virginia and the country at-large, especially to communities of color. Sheila’s priority is to ensure that the commonwealth joins neighboring states in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI); Sheila not only wants to be a part of this regional agreement but also wants to accelerate Virginia’s timeline to become a carbon-neutral economy and a regional hub for green jobs.

Criminal Justice Reform

The criminal justice system is inherently unjust and is not doing the job for which it was intended. The system leads to the incarceration of far too many, particularly for drug crimes. People of every race use illegal drugs at similar rates, yet African-Americans are far more likely to be imprisoned than whites. African-Americans are 3-4 times more likely to be arrested for drug crimes and six to ten times more likely to be imprisoned. Additionally, our legislature has shown no interest in helping inmates successfully reintegrate into our communities and productively contribute to society. Nor are they interested in restoring the constitutional right to vote to felons who have done their time.

Education

Teachers in Virginia face significant challenges. They are underpaid, as salaries have remained stagnant while living costs continue to soar. The current legislature has not adequately funded our schools, and the result is crumbling buildings and overcrowded classrooms. Excellent public education is crucial to ensure our graduates can meet the needs of Virginia’s businesses and to enhance property values in our state.

LGBTQ Rights

Sheila is strong support of LGBTQ rights here in Virginia. Equality is equality. Period. She believes that no one should be discriminated against because of their identity—especially in the workplace or at home. While the Republican leadership killed off a bill that enjoyed bipartisan support to ban discrimination, flipping VA blue will help move this issue forward.

Jobs

Virginia’s minimum wage has remained at $7.25 for years, despite the escalating cost of living — it’s literally a poverty wage for working single mothers. Juggling several jobs is not uncommon, in an effort to make ends meet. Sheila believes that if someone works 40 hours a week, they should be able to provide for their families, and she will work towards that goal.