Hampshire Gazette, 4/15/18

“Francia Wisnewski, candidate from Montague who has a background in education, social services and local government, said that she wants to create an economy that supports families, as well as education, economic development and affordable health care options.

“No one should have to choose between caring for families and loved ones and paychecks,” Wisnewski said. “Strong families build strong communities.”

Other focuses from Wisnewski included equal pay and affordable housing, so families don’t have to leave the communities they grew up in.

“We must ensure everyone gets a fair shake,” she said. “Owning a home should not break the bank.””

Read more here:

http://www.gazettenet.com/Eight-candidates-discuss-aspirations-for-1st-Franklin-seat-16885540

SWIHART EXITS RACE, ENDORSES FRANCIA WISNEWSKI FOR STATE REPRESENTATIVE

April 7, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: ​
Rachel Gordon           
Campaign Manager                                              
(413) 206-9789

Francia Wisnewski, candidate for state representative, First Franklin District, has received full support and endorsement from former challenger Elizabeth Swihart, who earlier this week exited the race to replace retiring Representative Stephen Kulik. “I am honored and grateful to have Elizabeth’s support, and I am looking forward to continuing to work with her toward our shared goals for our community,” said Wisnewski.

Swihart noted in her announcement that “Something does need to change in order for women with young children to have a voice in the state government. My family has to come first, and so, at least this time, I will not be making that change.” Swihart also praised Wisnewski in her statement: “With this group of eight candidates, one in particular stands out to me: Francia Wisnewski. I urge you to shake her hand, tell her your story. She will listen. And then she will fight for your interests. As a small business owner who has given herself in service to the less advantaged for decades, she is qualified and experienced, and she has an authenticity and integrity that is second to none. Join me in voting for Francia in the democratic primary on September 4.”

Wisnewski, a mother of two sons who currently serves as Chair of the Hampshire/Franklin Commission on the Status of Women and Girls, and has worked with family support services in Western Mass. for almost two decades, understands the toll that multiple priorities take on women. “I am very sympathetic to Elizabeth’s circumstances;  this is why I am focused on increasing the services and support available to the working people of our communities,” she said. “And it is why I will be at the State House on May 16 to advocate or the Act Supporting Working Parents who Choose to Run for Public Office” (S386/H2898).

76% of all mothers and 95% of all fathers work full-time and rely on outside childcare, and Massachusetts has the highest average cost of childcare in the nation. The average cost per year in an infant care center in Massachusetts is over $20,000, while the median income for single parent households is only $28,390.

Potential candidates who are parents of young children and are less affluent are discouraged from running for office because of the costs of childcare, leading to a candidate pool that does not adequately represent the people of the Commonwealth. Assisting candidates with the cost of childcare would allow more primary caregivers to run for office, in turn providing better representation of the needs of children and families in state government.

The First Franklin District of Massachusetts serves the communities of Ashfield, Buckland, Chester, Chesterfield, Conway, Cummington, Deerfield, Goshen, Huntington, Leverett, Middlefield, Montague, Plainfield, Shelburne, Shutesbury, Sunderland, Whately, Williamsburg, and Worthington.

Francia Wisnewski, Democratic Candidate
Massachusetts State Representative First Franklin District
 francia4franklin1st.com  
Francia4Franklin1st  @franciawisnewski
196 Turnpike Rd. Montague MA 01351
Campaign Staff: franciaforfranklinfirst@gmail.com

Francia Wisnewski Announces Candidacy for State Representative, First Franklin District

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — March 2, 2018

Francia Wisnewski Announces Candidacy for State Representative, First Franklin District

MONTAGUE, Mass. — Francia Wisnewski of Montague has announced her bid for the open state representative seat in the 1st Franklin District, which includes Ashfield, Buckland, Chester, Chesterfield, Conway, Cummington, Deerfield, Goshen, Huntington, Leverett, Middlefield, Montague, Plainfield, Shelburne, Shutesbury, Sunderland, Whately, Williamsburg, and Worthington.

“I am proud for this opportunity to serve Western Massachusetts communities, said Wisnewski. “I am excited to bring my experience in state and local education policy, as well as my passion for advocating for families and children. I will ensure that the voices of all residents are heard on Beacon Hill.”

Wisnewski currently serves as Chair of the Hampshire/Franklin Commission on the Status of Women and is a member of the Montague Town Meeting and the Montague Democratic Committee. She also serves on the boards of the Shea Theater and Leadership Pioneer Valley. Before moving to Montague, she served two terms on the Greenfield School Committee, including a term as Vice-Chair, and served as a state Democratic delegate. She is a graduate of the Emerge Massachusetts program.

A 15-year resident of Franklin County, Wisnewski has been a tireless advocate for children and residents in need, with a special emphasis on education. As Senior Program Manager at Raising a Reader Massachusetts, she supports preparing children for school success through early reading and parental education. She holds a Master’s in Education from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.

Wisnewski supports increased recognition for the working people of our community: making pre-kindergarten and day care services affordable and accessible to working parents through expansion of state vouchers and streamlined accreditation procedures for providers; working with farmers and tradespeople to create more regional centers for processing and manufacturing food and other local products. As a long-time advocate for working women, she supports legislation to make Massachusetts the first state to ensure equal pay for equal work.

Wisnewski lives in Montague with her husband, Mark, a local business owner, their sons Luke and Corin, their dog Ollie, their cat Nini, and their chickens. She will announce the formation of her committee shortly.