Meet Jessica Slisz, running for The House of Representatives in Missouri’s 49th District.
Leaders in this position are in charge of making laws and leading discussions about the state and the communities within their district. Since Jessica has lived in Callaway County for her entire life, she’s confident that she knows the people and can understand the needs of their communities. Jessica tells us that within this district, you’ll mostly find rural farmland along with small towns that have just about everything their residents need. Nothing more, nothing less.
Here’s why Jessica decided that she wanted to run: As a child, she met the Governor of Missouri and was instantly awe struck by the way he was able to connect with so many people. She was only 5 years old when she realized how much she looked up to him and his role in the community. She also spent her childhood visiting the capitol of Missouri with her family and she always knew it was a place she wanted to work at in the future. Finally, recent events in the world encouraged her to take the dive and get involved in government. At first, Jessica planned on running for County Commissioner, but something in her pushed her to reach even further and run to be a State Representative! With her husband’s support, Jessica is confident in her candidacy. She is actually the only Democrat running for office in the 49th district!
Jessica has worked in the pharmacy field for many years and has some pressing concerns about health care access within her district. In Callaway County, there is only 1 medical clinic and getting an appointment can be a lengthy process. Aside from that, many people living in this district have to drive almost an hour to the nearest hospital. Getting an ambulance is difficult as well because of the cost and the time it takes for the ambulance to reach rural communities. As you can guess, this puts many people in dangerous situations when healthcare is not readily available. If appointed, Jessica wants to make it much easier for the people of her district to get medical attention by making sure they have a working emergency room. Another one of her goals is to provide medical insurance for all children no matter who they are or where they come from. She says that while universal healthcare is a great goal for our country, we can start by ensuring that children have access to medical care at all times. Jessica says that there are enough resources in their state’s system to make this happen, they just need the right people to come in and advocate for changes.
Another topic that is important to Jessica is providing mental health care within communities. Jessica has seen a large stigma around mental health within her district and aims to end that stigma by opening up more mental health resources. She wants to appoint a mental health care professional in each school so that children have a safe place to talk to someone. This way, children will be able to get help without having to find a provider and make appointments. Jessica pointed out to us that by providing mental health care to students, we could avoid some tragic events like school shootings by helping students before they find themselves in an unhealthy mental space.
This is Jessica’s message for all of you: “Love thy neighbor. No matter who you are, no matter what party affiliation. Do better by each other.” She wants the world to know that her district and her community has a very unique history and she wants to push everyone around her to respect others and accept people for who they are. Jessica has a corgi shepherd mix named Bacardi who she raises with her husband who she met in her first year of college. She even owns chickens and geese!