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Vivian's Platform

Vivian on Indigenous Rights

Indigenous rights and autonomy: Colorado was once home to more than 46 tribes, today it hosts only two.  The Southern Ute’s, and Ute Mountain Ute’s are the soul of this land, and its history. Colorado can always to more to raise the volume of indigenous voices, listen to their stories, and serve their needs. 

  • Vivian is committed to supporting the tribes of Southwest Colorado, committed to amplifying their voices and making sure they are heard.  Above all, Vivian believes in their sovereignty.  Our tribes must have a seat at the table and a voice in the affairs of Colorado. They must be respected. 

Vivian on Housing

The housing crisis in Colorado is at a crossroads. We cannot continue, as a state, to stand by while good people go homeless because we lack sufficient housing solutions to serve people at all economic levels.  Vivian’s own experience moving back to Colorado after her years of travel is exemplary of the issues Colorado faces.  Often, regardless of income level, buyers find themselves unable to secure long-term, reliable situations.  When they do find a place, they may be unable to keep up with the rising costs of property taxes and other associated expenses. For those at or below the poverty line, these issues become much more painful and acute. 

  • Vivian is committed to working with legislators, the Governor, and local municipalities to find genuine solutions that serve to strengthen our communities by ensuring we build enough housing to serve Coloradoans at all income levels. 

  • This means opening up opportunities for building more multi-family housing units and tenant owned mobile home parks while finding ways to reduce the impact of property taxes. 

Vivian on Immigration

Immigration: As someone who has traveled extensively across the globe, and someone earning a degree in Anthropology, Vivian knows better than anyone that the hateful, uninformed, rhetoric coming from the republican party is purely a scare tactic. Immigration is, and always has been, an essential component of American society. Now, more than ever, as we see the disappearance of the baby boomers and record low unemployment, we need to recognize that our economy cannot function without the valuable input of those seeking entrance into this country via the proper channels.  Employers cannot survive in a labor market where applicant shortages mean salaries are always climbing. Consumers cannot pay ever increasing prices those higher salaries demand. Our economy requires workers to achieve balance, and a healthy, well managed immigration system is key.

  • Vivian Supports responsible immigration control, but emphasizes the necessity of having legitimate paths to citizenship as part of our economic plan. 

Vivian on Labor & Unions

Labor and Unions: Prior to the Reagan presidency, the ratio between executive and employee salaries was roughly 42:1, in 2022 it hovered around 324:1.  This widening disparity is rewarding those who do nothing for the efforts of those who produce everything.  Vivian has owned and operated more than one business over the years, and understands that the small business owner is not on the same level as the corporate CEO. The small business owner is working twice as hard as his employees just to keep the business afloat.  Understanding this key difference between the entrepreneur and the publicly trading mega corporation, and acknowledging that different regulations need to be applied to both, is critical in finding legislative solutions that work to put as much money into the pockets of workers that keep our state moving forward. This means helping the small business owner find ways of both making a successful business and paying their employees livable wages so that they can contribute to the companies success without suffering.  It also means working with labor and unions to prevent the large corporations from taking advantage of loop holes and work arounds that allow them to put more in their own pockets, or the pockets of their faceless shareholders, at the expense of the frontline workers. 

Vivian, through her experience, is able to appreciate all the perspectives involved with respect to salary levels and is committed to giving every small business the chance for success so long as that does not come at the expense of their employees. 

  • Vivian is driven to fight large corporations in order to curb their greed and challenge the 324:1 model in favor of protecting employees and ensuring that everyone earns what they deserve for their efforts.  

Vivian on Abortion

Abortion, like all medical decisions a person must face throughout the course of their lifetime, is an incredibly emotional and difficult decision. As such the only people qualified to consult or be involved with that decision are those directly impacted by it. The parents and their trusted circle of doctors and friends are the only people that should have a voice in whether or not to terminate a pregnancy. Vivian is working closely with Cobalt to ensure that initiative #89 makes it onto the 2024 ballot, this initiative will forever enshrine in our state constitution the right to abortion as well as removing all previous discriminatory language and legislation that blocked some people from using their insurance to help cover the cost of the procedure.  

  • Vivian supports all efforts to keep abortion legal and accessible in Colorado, and should the ballot initiative fail, she will always lend her voice to protecting access to abortion through her position in the state legislature.

Vivian on Education

Vivian retired from her lucrative career in the energy sector to return to college after a 35-year absence to complete the degrees she began in the late 1980s.  Just recently she learned that her own mother had been barred from pursuing her own education after high school and literally fled her home state and made her way to Colorado where she worked full time while raising three children and still managed to put herself through college. There are few things Vivian values more than education, and her recent experience going back to school, surrounding herself with recent high school graduates, has really opened her eyes to the state of education in Colorado and the United States.   Colorado needs to stop playing with our children’s futures, Colorado needs to fully fund our schools and find its way to the top of the education leaderboard in this country. Money is not everything however, and Vivian is acutely aware that our current system that treats students as products, and teachers as producers is doing more harm than good. Our children are feeling overwhelmed, they are losing self-confidence, and their self-esteem is plummeting. Is it any wonder, under these conditions, that kids have such a negative opinion of school and dream of nothing more than escaping that environment in order to move on to a job?  Education is the greatest gift a society can bestow upon its children, but it needs to serve the children, not the administrators trying for better jobs, and certainly not the corporations looking for a compliant labor force. 

  • Vivian seeks to fully fund education while working to refocus the system onto the children it should be serving and away from the corporate and administrative systems it serves today.

  • Vivian sees the stressors that crush our children’s self-esteem as a major contributor to the waves of senseless school violence. Vivian will work tirelessly to help kids find a lifelong love of learning that serves them and makes them appreciate their talents and celebrate them, rather than brood over their failures or perceived shortcomings.

Vivian on Rural Healthcare

Rural Heath Care: When Vivian’s wife needed knee surgery, she was forced to travel to Denver to have the procedure done. This, despite the fact that Durango had the physicians and facilities to carry out the operation. It’s shear insanity, we are letting the insurance companies dictate to rural Colorado what procedures we can get, and where we can get them.  This needs to stop!  We have good doctors, but we cannot keep them if we don’t support them. This support means taking on the insurance companies and the major medical providers that are dictating terms to us that only serve their shareholders and forcing them to serve our needs instead. This is a multi-faceted problem and to solve it we also need to focus on housing and education to make our rural communities attractive and livable to qualified professionals.  

  • Vivian is committed to supporting all efforts that will strengthen the quality and availability of quality healthcare in Southwest Colorado

Vivian on Agriculture

Agriculture: Agriculture is the lifeblood of southwest Colorado, and smart legislation that serves and protects our producers and the essential resources they rely on is paramount to maintaining our way of life. We must protect our water rights from a growing urban population with ever increasing demands. We must support efforts to lower the median age of farmers across the region and bring new farmers into the area. Vivian’s fifteen years of experience as a farmer and her time as Executive director of a farmer focused non-profit has taught her firsthand the types of efforts that work, and those that don’t.  At a time when our farmers are aging into retirement with no-one left to pass on their knowledge to, it’s more important than ever to connect young people with ambitions of farming to those old hands that know how to make this incredibly difficult business viable. 

Vivian is committed to protecting Southwest Colorado’s water rights and protecting and preserving this essential resource for the people of District 6.

  • Vivian knows how to build programs that work to support both old and new farmers, ensuring our production capacity grows without leaving our farmers destitute and buried in debt.

Vivian on Taxes

Taxes: No one likes paying taxes, but it’s the price we must pay to have drivable roads, reliable infrastructure, descent schools, beautiful parks, and the essential services we all need to live happy rewarding lives. The issues always come down to getting the most bang for our collective buck.  The money we all pay in taxes needs to be managed responsibly for the exclusive benefit of the citizens of Colorado, not the politicians or corporations. 

  • Vivian will work tirelessly to see the state efficiently and responsibly uses your hard-earned tax dollars to your benefit.  When they’re not, she’ll be fighting to set the system right.  We must pay taxes, but when we do, we should feel confident that the money is being used wisely.  

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