Key actions and positions posted on the intersection of disability and education, jobs, immigration, climate crisis, criminal justice and more
Sacramento, CA, August 5 – Democratic candidate and retired airport analyst Joel Ventresca has responded to a detailed candidate questionnaire on disability issues. The questionnaire is from RespectAbility, a nonpartisan nonprofit disability organization that does not endorse candidates. The questionnaire is purely for educational purposes. RespectAbility has reached out to candidates in California’s critical gubernatorial recall election. The full text of RespectAbility’s questions and Ventresca’s responses follows:
EDUCATION & SKILLS
What is your plan to ensure that all students with disabilities, including English Language Learners, receive an appropriate education to acquire critical and marketable skills?
I will enact high quality education & healthcare, cradle-to-grave, for all residents of California. All barriers for individuals with disabilities will be removed.
Funding will come from: workers making over $50,000 a year with a payroll deduction (one-third of the cost); combining federal, state, and local revenues which are already spent on education & healthcare services (one-third of the cost); and increasing taxes on wealthy individuals and wealthy corporations (one-third the cost).
The student, patient, and user of these services will have no out-of-pocket costs. I will eliminate bills, debts, and fears related to these lifetime services.
EMPLOYMENT & ENTREPRENEURSHIP
If elected, what will you do to advance opportunities for people with disabilities who want to work and earn an income, just like anyone else?
See answer to question one.
How will you support employers, large and small, to recruit and hire workers with disabilities?
As California governor, I will create economic incentives for businesses to hire individuals with disabilities.
How will you promote evidence-based policies and best practices leading to meaningful careers as well as disability entrepreneurship opportunities?
I will create an advisory council of stakeholders and individuals with disabilities to propose changes to law, regulation, and policy that impact the disability community. As governor, all my decisions will be based on indisputable facts, evidence, and science and an examination of best practices. I support meaningful careers and entrepreneurship opportunities for individuals with disabilities and will invest heavily in this project.
ACCESS & INCLUSION
Whether or not you have a formal platform, what specific plans do you have to incorporate the voices of people with disabilities into your decision-making processes, if elected?
I will create an advisory council of stakeholders and individuals with disabilities to propose changes to law, regulation, and policy that impact the disability community.
What steps, if any, have you taken to make your campaign accessible for people with disabilities and to ensure that our voices are heard?
I have had advisors from the broad disability community for the past 31 years.
If elected, what will be your plan to fight stigmas, highlight the disability community, and promote higher expectations for success?
I will bring leaders of the disability community into my administration. As California governor, I will be America’s strongest game changer for improving the conditions of the disability community. I will confront bias, discrimination, bigotry, and stigmas in all there forms.
OTHER KEY ISSUES
What additional policies and priorities, other than those already discussed above, do you plan to focus on to improve the lives of people with disabilities?
Here is my Platform:
Restoring, Reinventing & Reimagining the Golden California Dream: Advancing Groundbreaking Opportunity, Sustainability & Majority Electoral Support
Restore democracy; Reinvent government; Reimagine capitalism.
Create just, livable & flourishing California for all.
Enact high quality healthcare & education, cradle-to-grave, for all residents. Raise minimum wage to $16-an-hour. End homelessness, poverty & mass incarceration with comprehensive programs. Pass best tenant protection, civil rights, gun safety & police reform laws in the nation. Increase taxes on wealthy individuals & corporations. Eliminate taxes & fees on small businesses for 5 years. Build large-scale multi-unit permanent affordable housing.
Reverse growing economic inequality & expand economic democracy.
Disempower top 1% economic elite. Empower nonviolent mass movements. Reduce inequities, disparities & the gap between rich & poor. Challenge corporate & tech agendas. Restructure energy utilities into a full-service consumer-owned statewide public power system that operates efficiently, reliably, sustainably & safely with 15% lower rates. Remake California into the first zero-carbon emissions state in the nation. Cease fracking & oil drilling. Convert to non-nuclear 100% clean renewable energy. Establish free public transit.
Rejuvenate inclusive & diverse participatory democracy.
Remove corrupt influence of private money from politics by mandating 100% publicly-funded candidate campaigns & elections. Prohibit elected representatives from meeting with lobbyists. Halt government waste, fraud, abuse, inefficiency, mismanagement & corruption. Make safety, security, opportunity & well-being accessible to all. Confront bias, discrimination & bigotry.
If you have yet to develop them, what is your plan to learn about disability issues?
I will create an advisory council of stakeholders and individuals with disabilities to propose changes to law, regulation, and policy that impact the disability community. This council will report directly to the governor.
Ventresca is one of many candidates who are competing in California’s special gubernatorial recall election. For a full list of candidates running in the September 14 recall election and to learn more about voting, please visit the California Secretary of State’s 2021 CA Gubernatorial Recall Election website at https://www.sos.ca.gov/elections.
RespectAbility is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that fights stigmas and advances opportunities so people with disabilities can fully participate in all aspects of their communities. RespectAbility does not rate or endorse candidates. View more coverage of California candidates on our website.