On November 4th, Oregonians in Wilsonville will vote to elect a State Representative for District 26.  The race features incumbent Republican John Davis and challenger Democrat Eric Squires.  Each candidate was given equal opportunity to respond to APANO’s questionnaire, to engage more directly with Oregon’s 220,000 Asian and Pacific Islanders.  Their responses to 3 questions crafted by APANO members have been unedited and printed in full.  APANO makes no candidate endorsements, this information is solely for the purpose of voter education.

squires_davisLeft to right: Eric Squires and John Davis

1. Oregon currently graduates half of it’s English Language Learners, who make up 10% of the state’s K-12 student population. What policies will you support to ensure that students–including ones who identify as English Language Learner, have access to quality education and career-readiness programs after graduation? 

Squires (D): Stable funding is the apex priority before the public, in regards to schools. We have laws and policies in place that address equity in access. I ask APANO to partner with me to update the existing policies for defects, and identify future opportunities for leveraging better outcomes.

Davis (R): No Response

2. Access to quality, affordable, and culturally competent health care ensures Oregonians are able to thrive and contribute. Please explain the policies you will support to increase access to care, and address health disparities, specifically for immigrants and refugees.

Squires (D): To be honest, I am struggling to sort out the continued impact of the Affordable Care Act. Also, the term ‘policy’ is easily convoluted in this context with an insurance policy, a distinction I have to make here as a license holder for many lines of insurance in Oregon, including health insurance.

My experience is that the health industry, more than others, embraces diversity and culturally competent delivery of services. Might we do better? Absolutely. Funding our Attorney General and BOLI Commissioners’ budget requests supporting enforcement actions is a good place to start. Eliminating the fraud exemption insurers enjoy might enable prosecution in matters if inequity by design.

Davis (R): No Response

3. What policies do you support to strengthen economic opportunity and jobs for all communities in Oregon?

Squires (D): Oddly, tax reform is where I join the conversation of economics and job opportunities. Immigrants often bring entrepreneurial zest to Oregon, and simplifying tax code and reporting requirements is an ongoing conversation due for deliberate discussion. Supporting audit functions ensures efficacy, and I support the concept of a state bank to increase lending liquidity

Davis (R): No Response