Commentary policy publishes 12 to 18 commentaries a week from a broad range of community sources. All commentaries must include the author’s first and last name, town of residence and a brief biography, including affiliations with political parties, lobbying or special interest groups. We have a minimum length of 400 words. We have found the ideal length is approximately 800 to 1,000 words. We provide some copyediting support, but we do not have the staff to fact-check commentaries. We reserve the right to reject opinions for matters of taste and accuracy. Commentaries are voices from the community and do not represent VTDigger in any way. Please send your commentary to Cate Chant, [email protected] and Anne Galloway, [email protected]

Jessica Early: Saving health care for all Vermonters

Will the state GOP and our new Gov. Phil Scott stand with Vermonters to protect health care?

Scott Woodward: Investing in affordable child care

As Gov. Scott so aptly described in his recent inaugural address, addressing our state’s shortage of high-quality, affordable child care is very much a part of resolving Vermont’s overall affordability issues.

Earl Kooperkamp: Taking care of working families

One policy that can go a long way in fostering this positive work environment for younger workers and their families is implementation of paid family and medical leave.

Joe Benning: Guns again?

Recently a constituent said she couldn’t understand why I was against universal background checks for gun transfers.

Caleb Magoon & Noah Noyes: Education is missing piece to fighting opiate abuse

Taking a serious look at how we educate the young and vulnerable people in our society about the dangers and consequences of even casual use must be a critical component of addressing the opiate crisis.

Don Peterson: The wonders of Earth

Last week, a giant sequoia toppled in California. It must have been a thousand years old.

Diana Barnard: End-of-life law working as intended

As a palliative care physician what I want most for my patients is to have access to the best possible medical care that honors individual patient experience; an approach that maximizes quality of life, fully addresses suffering, and hence decreases the need for Act 39.

Stephanie Seguino: Budgeting with a human face

Constituents from all sides lobby the board heavily — asking for more spending on educational programs, lower property tax increases, higher teacher salaries, and sometimes all of these at once.

Michael Badamo: Creative geopolitical agony

Words matter and Trump’s words even before he starts doing anything have already mattered to the major European governments.

John Brumsted: Uncertainty won’t sidetrack success of working together

The University of Vermont Health Network is committed to improving quality and controlling costs by continuing to work closely with Vermont’s hospitals and providers of all types to keep you healthy, instead of just treating you when you’re sick.

John McClaughry: What to expect for health care reform

Republicans now have the serious task of laying off their ritual denunciations of Obamacare, and producing their own replacement.

Bob Stannard: One way or another

Things will be much better this year. Right?

Nicole Mace: Civil discourse in education

Two issues that challenge the education community’s ability to engage in civil discourse are changes to employee health care plans and revisions to the rules governing independent schools.

Phil Letourneau: Supporting wind power for farmers, landowners and communities

Vermont has gone from having over 10,000 dairy farms to 1,000. Something’s got to change that. Solar and wind can help.