“If landlords did what they are supposed to do and tenants did what they are supposed to do they wouldn’t need me, I wouldn’t be here. But that’s not what’s happening.”

-Richard Klinge, Director of the Pro-Bono Housing Eviction Assistance Program at Oklahoma City University School of Law, which is helping tenants who are evicted after they complain to landlords who are not maintaining safe properties [Source: Fox 25]

“People who say ‘get over it’ — they just really don’t understand and haven’t taken the time to educate themselves on these issues because they still impact us today. Just because history is painful, doesn’t mean you need to forget it. So much of our history is sad that at some point you’ve got to empower the people by thinking of it in terms of being resilient and celebrating that we’re still here.”

-RaeLynn Butler, Creek Nation historic and cultural preservation manager, speaking about the forced march of Indian tribes to Oklahoma [Source: Tulsa World]

“Obviously, I did not come from a family with money or wealth and no political involvement outside of voting. It’s important to see the investment in what it does for students like me. The most powerful thing I can do as a legislator is work to expand the program.”

-Rep. Cyndi Munson, D-Oklahoma City, who said never could have afforded college without the Oklahoma’s Promise scholarship program [Source: Tulsa World]

“What happens is they, a lot of times, lose their job, they lose their ability to produce any kind of income and then sometimes they lose their homes. The far-reaching effects of that, sometimes their children go into DHS custody, and that is what we’re trying to obviously prevent.”

-Rep. Nicole Miller, R-Edmond, speaking about why she has introduced a bill to make bail more affordable so Oklahomans don’t end up waiting for weeks in jail before ever seeing a judge [Source: Fox 25]

“I was really mad. I was mad because I was in there for nothing. I didn’t deserve to be in there. That’s what I thought the whole time.”

-Giselle Perez, who was locked up by mistake in the Oklahoma County jail for two weeks after a traffic stop, during which she lost her job and her father missed work to watch her two children [Source: NewsOK]

“Our state doesn’t lack women who can serve in these positions. It feels kind of like another rendition of the good ol’ boys club at a time when more and more people are starting to understand the value and necessity of diversity.”

-Liz Charles, executive director of the Oklahoma Women’s Coalition, speaking about Gov. Stitt’s nearly all male and white cabinet appointments [Source: NewsOK]

“Mental health now has doctors [with] the ability to treat it if we don’t stigmatize it. If we take the individuals and we simply lock them up, we’re not treating it. We’re not helping the individual get better.”

-Oklahoma Congressman Markwayne Mullin, who is pushing for a bill to extend federal funding for comprehensive behavioral health clinics, including six clinics in Oklahoma [Source: Public Radio Tulsa]

“We had a funding-neutral bill with state agencies that can implement it and community-based organizations that are willing to support it and implement it, and it got hung up by ignorance and ideology. “I don’t understand how lawmakers up there couldn’t see that we need to make this a priority in Oklahoma with our awful statistics.”

– Stacey Wright, founder of Yes All Daughter, on the failure of a bill that would require schools to teach about consent and healthy relationships (Source: NonDoc)

“They’re back in their communities and many have skill set that could get them good jobs, (so) this would just give them more of a chance. Those who can get good jobs and housing have much less of a chance of going back to prison.”

– Rep. Cyndi Munson (D-OKC), on her bill (HB 2134) to reduce barriers to occupational licenses for people with prior criminal convictions [Source: Journal Record]

“Our teachers are spending a lot of their own money out of pocket to ensure their students have supplies, and we certainly intend to address classroom funding during the budgeting process. But this is one way we can get money directly into the classroom and also help those teachers recoup those costs so they don’t have to choose between their families and their students.”

– Oklahoma House Speaker Charles McCall, speaking in favor of HB 2502, a proposal to provide a $1,000 tax credit that teachers can claim for classroom expenditures and fees associated with the teacher certification process [Source: Skiatook Journal]