Through her work in government and the nonprofit sector, Crystal has witnessed far too many Missourians struggle with healthcare access, managing payments, and opioid addiction. Crystal has been a leader in bringing Medicaid expansion to Missouri, and is dedicated to addressing barriers Missourians experience in receiving affordable healthcare. She is ready to go back to Jefferson City to address these barriers including Medicaid application wait times, access to local hospitals in rural communities, and gaps in current Medicaid coverage.
Crystal has spent years partnering with school districts across the state to help our communities meet the most basic needs of Missouri’s children. Through her experiences in social work, she understands firsthand the importance of fully funding our schools. Thanks to Crystal’s dedication, Missouri fully funded school transportation in 2022 for the first time in years. In Jefferson City, she fights to provide educators with the tools and support that they need to ensure that students have access to a quality education, regardless of class, race, religion, gender, or location. As the first in her family to graduate high school and then the first to graduate college, Crystal knows the importance of affordable and accessible education. That’s why Crystal continues the fight to fund public schools and higher education in the Missouri budget.
As a parent, Crystal has had to decide between quality childcare and affordability. She has had to look at her budget to make the hard decisions that families have to struggle with every day. Having access to affordable and high quality daycare and early childhood education programs has been a priority for her in Jefferson City. Since her election, she has sponsored bills that combat the child care cliff effect, giving parents a way to work their way towards success and has worked to secure child care funding for small businesses to be able to provide as a resource to their employees.
The fact that many Missourians work 40 to 60 hour work weeks and yet still struggle financially is appalling. Growing up with a mother who waited tables, and through her own experience working minimum wage jobs in college, Crystal understands the troubling financial implications of Missouri’s current minimum wage. She stood with Missourians and Raise Up Missouri’s push for a minimum wage increase in 2018. Crystal continues to fight every day for living wages, protecting unemployment benefits, the right to unionize, and supporting the Fast Track Workforce Incentive Program so that Missouri families can thrive and grow.
Every person should have the autonomy to make decisions about their body and their life. Republicans have passed extreme abortion bans in recent years, including a trigger law in 2019 that banned access to abortion even in cases of rape, incest, or medical need after the Roe v. Wade was overturned.
Mothers die from childbirth in Missouri in numbers far greater than the rest of the industrialized world, and instead of promoting healthcare, Missouri legislators have placed burdensome restrictions on it.
Republicans have gone so far as to pass legislation that costs hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to defend against Constitutional challenges, while at the same time blaming budget shortfalls for lack of funding for essential items like school transportation.
As state representative and Democratic Floor Leader, Crystal has stood and will continue to stand with women for the right to make the best decisions about their healthcare for their own lives.