Hi, I’m Dr. Janette DeFelice and I’m running for DuPage County Board in District 4.
I gave a talk a couple of years ago, shortly after Trump was elected about how liberals and conservatives think differently. One of the major things that stood out to me about those differences was that conservatives tend to look to the past, while liberals look to the future. I’m here because I’m looking toward our collective future. And I’m here because I have two little kids in the public school system that need to grow up healthy and know that we did everything we could to protect them.
To tell you a little about myself, I am a writer, physician, and mom. I live in Glen Ellyn with my husband, 9-year-old twins, and our cat Clara Barton. We’ve been residents of DuPage County for the last 8 years.
I’m really concerned about protecting our communities from the crippling economic and detrimental public health effects that climate change will bring to our communities.
Business as usual is not sustainable for future growth in our changing environment. I envision DuPage County embracing renewable energy and green infrastructure, supporting sustainable small businesses, and in doing so, strengthening our local economy. Our emphasis needs to be on community innovation over corporate interests.
And let me tell you something: Renewables is a $1.9 trillion industry. If we don’t get in, if we keep ourselves tethered to a past greatness that never actually was, DuPage County is going to get left behind. It’s not going to be the idyllic county with the great schools.
It’s not only about the economy. We also have to protect our health, and our children’s health. We must prepare for increased flooding brought by climate change, which brings with it disease-carrying mosquitos and ticks and has the potential to overflow our stormwater systems, by implementing green infrastructure solutions. Furthermore, we must not tolerate companies like Sterigenics that knowingly poison the air our children breathe. We must face the opioid epidemic head-on by treating it as a public health emergency.
I’d just like to talk briefly about the budget. I understand that it’s limited, and cutting staff and salaries is all the rage. But cutting funding to the DuPage Care Center (which is in the budget for 2019)? That’s just unconscionable. If we keep our money local instead of awarding contracts to big, out-of-town corporations, that money stays in circulation in our local economy. The same goes for supporting local businesses, like marijuana dispensaries. Listen, for every $100 spent in an independent local business, $48 of that stays in the community. [My time ran out before I could get to this sentence: If we spend that same $100 at an in-town chain only $14 stays in the community. And if we shop online, only $1 stays (and that’s only if the delivery driver lives locally).]
ONE SENTENCE (or two): Janette DeFelice is a forward-thinking candidate who is committed to bringing green energy and green jobs to DuPage not only to bolster a local, sustainable economy, but also to protect our health.