Gluesenkamp Perez Visits Cowlitz County Highlighting Importance of Childcare Access and Career Pathways in the Trades

Jan 05, 2024

Yesterday, Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez (WA-03) visited a high school career and technical education (CTE) program, Head Start program, and lumber mill machine manufacturer in Cowlitz County. 

As a mom who worked in the trades before coming to Congress, Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez has been focused on expanding CTE opportunities and making childcare more accessible and affordable.

“By strengthening access to childcare, ensuring students have robust technical education in schools, and building out family-wage jobs in our woods, we can drive Southwest Washington’s economy forward. It’s why I’ve introduced bipartisan legislation to do just that in Congress,” said Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez. “Before being sworn in, my husband and I brought our son to our auto repair shop most days because there were no other childcare options available. Yesterday, I enjoyed speaking with parents who shared they can more fully participate in our economy and support their family when they have access to high-quality childcare.”

Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez visits the Apprenticeship Preparation Program at Mark Morris High School in Longview, WA.

Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez started her day by visiting Longview School District’s Apprenticeship Preparation Program at Mark Morris High School. She spoke with students about what she’s working on in Congress, answered questions, and toured the shop to see what projects students are working on.

The Congresswoman has been supportive of fully funding Perkins grants for state CTE programs, and she has introduced bipartisan bills to build awareness of CTE opportunities, strengthen forestry career training, and help small businesses hire trade school grads.

Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez visits Lower Columbia College Head Start in Longview, WA.

Afterward, Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez visited the Lower Columbia College (LCC) Head Start, Early Head Start (EHS), and Early Childhood Education Assistant Program (ECEAP). The programs provide education, childcare, and health services at no cost to eligible families.

The Congresswoman talked with parents about how they are supported and empowered economically by the programs, as well as with LCC staff about staffing needs to meet increasing demand.

In September, Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez held a childcare roundtable with parents and caregivers in Ilwaco. She also introduced legislation to make childcare more accessible and affordable in rural communities and is a cosponsor of a bipartisan bill to help families facing rising costs of care.

Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez tours USNR in Woodland, WA.

Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez finished her day in Woodland with a tour of USNR, a lumber mill machine manufacturer. They discussed the importance of supporting jobs in the trades and how lumber machinery helps drive local forest products economies.

In Congress, Rep. Gluesenkamp Perez is working on legislation to bring jobs back to the woods and strengthen Southwest Washington’s forest products economies, including bills she introduced to drive timber innovation and invest in wood energy programs.

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