By: Jared Fisher
I believe our state is only as strong as its families and communities. Nevada residents need to elect officials that will emphasize the value of parental involvement in schools and encourage community engagement and volunteer service.
Nevada is facing a major mental health crisis.
Our state currently ranks 45 out of 50 for mental health, according to research conducted by U.S. News and Reports (though some studies put that number at 50). Dive further into that data and you see that we rank 48 out of 50 for both community engagement and social support. The research suggests that a number of Nevada residents feel socially isolated and, possibley as a result, are struggling with higher-than-average rates of anxiety, depression and addiction.
Scientific studies show strong family and community ties can help.
Research has found that people who lack strong social ties and close relationships are not only less happy than those who have the support of tight-knit communities and families, but they’re also less healthy as well. Lonely people often suffer from poor sleep, weak immune systems and are at a higher risk of heart disease.
Conversely, studies like the 80-year Harvard happiness study, have found that the greatest influence on a person’s overall wellbeing and happiness levels wasn’t genetics, wealth or even career success, but rather the presence of close, personal relationships. The study’s findings revealed that those who make an effort to nurture relationships with family, friends and community members are far happier and more successful than those who lead more solitary, isolated, lives.
We need to encourage parental involvement in the education system.
One of the unexpected consequences of the deterioration of the family unit has been the rise of permissive parenting ,”latchkey kids” and the lack of day-to-day parental involvement in children’s education. As Nevada’s divorce rate has risen and as parents have become overly burdened with work and other commitments, our schools’ graduation rates and student test scores have suffered. We need to empower our teachers and principals to insist on parental accountability—Children have a far greater chance at academic achievement when they have parents who hold high standards for their children and work to ensure their kids develop self discipline, self confidence and pride in their academic performance.
Volunteerism and giving back to our communities is vital.
Volunteerism not only benefits the communities where volunteers serve, it also benefits the volunteers themselves. People who regularly give back either through church or nonprofit community service are happier and healthier (both physically and mentally), reports Harvard Health. Thus, instead of pouring more tax-payer money into ineffectual government-run social programs, I believe one of the smartest steps our local government can take is to promote our Nevada nonprofits and to incentivize our citizens to volunteer their time helping their fellow community members.
We need government leaders who possess strong moral values and character.
Too often throughout Nevada’s history, our state government has been marred by corruption and crooked politicians. But it doesn’t have to be that way. We can choose to say “no” to the business-as-usual politicians by voting in citizens who share the same values and live by the same high ethical code as we do. Those in office cannot expect citizens to “do as we say, not as we do.” We need to elect government leaders who will lead by example.
The bottom line:
The answer to Nevada’s crime, poverty, homelessness and education problems aren’t more government spending, but rather time spent advocating for personal responsibility and healthy parenting. Our government needs to maximize efficiency and reduce wasteful spending by leaning on nonprofits and private organizations for support. The government alone cannot (and should not) fix this. These are problems that need to be fixed by those most affected: The citizens of our communities.
I hope you will show your support for family values by voting for me in the Republican Primary. Fill out our pledge form below.