Name: Jeff Staples
Race: Senate, 5th Ddistrict
Biography: Jeff Staples is a social and environmental justice activist. He has been active in these areas since before he was old enough to vote. He is a 1984 Lynchburg College graduate. Staples is employed as an automotive repair professional. He has received awards for his work against pipelines and was a House of Delegates Candidate in 2015 and 2017. Staples is a life-long Virginia resident, and resides in the Deep Creek section of Chesapeake.
Why should residents elect you to the Virginia Senate?
The short answer is, I want to work for them. I have pledged to not take any corporate money. My opponent, routinely takes hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. I feel that diminishes the amount of effort that a legislator will give to helping people and increase their commitment to the corporate bottom line.
Virginia has now fallen to the bottom in rankings for worker prospects.
More attention needs to be made to repeal the anti-union, so called right to work law. We need a bigger emphasis on getting Virginians better access to health care. Our educational system needs much attention and funding. We need vocational education to train our students for the high tech, clean energy jobs of today and tomorrow. And so much more.
I am willing and ready to focus on these types of needs.
What is the biggest issue facing your district, and how do you plan to address it?
I believe the lack of opportunity within our district, is the biggest problem. Our district has lost much of the manufacturing, services and retail that it used to provide. There has been a push to get business and services further and further out. The Rt. 17 corridor is a prime example. The 5th District has lots of available land that is already zoned appropriately, has the utilities in place, public transportation and an available work force that needs employment.
I do not understand why there is such a push by our state and local leaders to put industry in the far south, when our district is so much closer to the Port of Virginia and existing interstates and already has all of these available amenities.
What was the most important vote taken in the Virginia General Assembly in 2019, and why?
The Medicaid Expansion vote, because 400,000 low income Virginians finally received access to health care. I believe that healthcare is a human right. This vote was a start, but we have a long way to go to provide for all Virginians. I am willing to fight that fight.