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Letter to the Editor: Support for Jillian Gilchrest

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Dear Editor

I met Jillian Gilchrest several months ago at a networking event for local West Hartford women. Upon initial introduction, I was immediately drawn to her warm personality, vibrant sense of purpose, and inspired by her political drive. As I learned more about Jillian’s professional experience and advocacy work, I became confident that she is the best choice for State Representative for Connecticut’s 18th District and I plan to vote for her on August 14th in the Democratic primary. 

The truth is, I have always been politically engaged, but also realize that I take a step back from that political engagement whenever I need an emotional break. And I can do that – because of my privilege. The privilege afforded to me by my middle-class upbringing in a suburban neighborhood with good schools. The privilege afforded to me by having the financial means to pursue higher education at the collegiate and post-graduate levels. And the privilege afforded to me as I walk through this world as a white American woman. 

But Jillian Gilchrest has never taken a step back from fighting for the rights of those who have not been afforded such privileges. She has a proven record of working with legislators to help pass laws that make our communities safer. Jillian wrote legislation and advocated for the passage of new state laws to address campus sexual assault and the backlog of rape kits in Connecticut. She is a tireless advocate for victims of human trafficking and proposed policy solutions that resulted in the first conviction for such a crime in Connecticut. Through her experience helping women who are victims of domestic violence, Jillian knows first-hand the importance of keeping firearms out of the hands of domestic abusers. She championed legislation that removes firearms from an abuser when a victim of domestic violence is issued a temporary restraining order. And because of her continued commitment to fighting for common sense laws to prevent gun violence, Jillian was recently awarded a Gun Sense Candidate of Distinction from Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. 

As a mother of two young girls, I will continue to use my privilege to fight for the rights of others and to follow Jillian’s lead to step up to – and not away from – this responsibility. And this is why, on August 14th, I will VOTE for Jillian Gilchrest for State Representative for Connecticut’s 18th District. I urge my neighbors to join me.  

Amy Bieniek 
West Hartford

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