49 Voices: Mackenzie Harvey of Eagle River

Mackenize Harvey of Eagle River (Photo by Wesley Early, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage)

This week we’re hearing from Mackenzie Harvey from Eagle River. Last week, Harvey, her husband, and their two young daughters traveled to Washington D.C. for Strolling Thunder, a baby march put on by the nonprofit Zero to Three.

Listen now

HARVEY: The whole purpose of the event was just to really remind our representatives about little kids because too often, they’re sort of left behind in writing legislation because school-age kids are represented by schools. The whole premise was “Think Babies.” They just really wanted chaos.

We were really fortunate to meet with both Senator Murkowski and Senator Sullivan personally.

When we were in our meeting with Sen. Murkowski, she started wanting to talk about policy, and the liaison stepped in and said, “This is not the time, but we do have an arm of our organization. We’d love to follow up with you.” She was super eager to do that, so I felt like that was really positive.

Sullivan was so excited to meet with us. He has two young daughters… three young daughters — I have two. (He was) telling us about his family, showed us photos of their Christmas card from last year. He wanted to know about our joys and our struggles, but their wasn’t the push to talk about actual policy.

I got to connect with some other parents, but our issues are relatively similar, regardless of where we’re from. The biggest thing was just that people were amazed that we’d come from so far for this event. We got a lot of recognition like, “Wow! That’s a really long flight. That’s a huge time difference with two small kids. Like, this must really matter to you.” And so, I think that sort of spoke for itself.

We actually missed the start of the march. At the last minute right before the march started, both of my kids had to go to the bathroom. The march had taken off without us, so we had to chase it down, but it was chaos for sure. There were babies crying. It was a site to see for sure.