I’m running for Orlando City Commissioner District 5 to join my neighbors in collectively imagining a District 5 where working class people can thrive and build wealth, where our air, homes and youth are safe, where we can achieve our goals with the collaboration of city leaders who recognize both our needs and our strengths. I’m in this race, not just to imagine that place, but to partner together to build it.
For far too long, the visions that District 5 residents have for ourselves have been ignored, it’s wrong and it’s not fair. It doesn’t have to be that way – but we have to rise up together and make our voices heard at the polls on November 7, 2017.
Here’s what I’m hearing from District 5:
I’m hearing that we’re hungry for Investment in the Creativity and Talent of the District 5 residents, and for making sure that economic development practices build and keep wealth in our community. I will make this a reality by working with you in City Hall to create a West Cultural & Economic Corridor. Together, we can make sure that the city implements community wealth building practices like nurturing local businesses and worker-owned cooperatives, as well as delivering tailored assistance to the existing local businesses and entrepreneurs.
I’m hearing a deep need for a Justice system that is truly JUST. We can start to make this happen by applying the proven ideas that I have built into my platform, such as community policing and proactively addressing youth violence through proven public health approaches, rather than through a policing-only approach. We can repeal ordinances used to unfairly target people of color and the poor and we can establish an empowered and independent civilian review authority.
This are the kind of bold and achievable changes we can make to our city, together – but only if District 5 make their voices heard on November 7th.
If you sign up here, someone from my team will be in touch to get you started. (I promise, it’ll be fun.)
I hope to see you soon,
There’s a lot at stake in District 5 and the residents of District 5 deserve better! District 5 has an opportunity to send a message about what you think of the way City Hall treats it’s residents. There are more than 23,000 registered voters and less than 3,000 voted in 2014. The time is NOW to show City Hall what District 5 is made of. http://http://www.clickorlando.com/news/city-of-orlando-drops-eminent-domain-lawsuit-against-church-moves-soccer-stadium-site
So what is this campaign about? Well for one, I come to this moment with a lifetime of mixing education, public service and organizing. I’d like to kick off my first blog with a bit more than your usual first message - with some dreaming about what solidarity can be.
I know that a lot of us are feeling extremely discouraged. Questioning everything. Feeling despair and rage. But here’s what’s running in a loop in my head: to be in a constant state of resistance is to be in a constant state of dreaming, because it’s the dreaming — imagining the world that we want for ourselves, for our neighbors, and for our families — that fuels our drive to resist.
For me, dreaming is a political orientation. For me, dreaming is also a means of survival, but not a passive survival rooted in silence. I’m dreaming of being surrounded by people in District 5, that, through their grimace survive through music, owning their own businesses, preserving history and the smells from the cookout down the block. Who survive as they dance, write, read, and economically thrive in their own community. I see that dreaming-to-survive spirit in the mothers and the fathers who, every day, seem to make magic for our kids.
Here’s what I know: our city too often imagines a bright and shiny progressive badge for itself. Yet we know that there is another side of that story. One where black and brown bodies are policed and punished. Where we struggle in jobs that barely get food in our babies’ bellies and a cozy roof over their heads, and where those jobs are a far- cry from being engaging and exciting careers where we can bring our best ideas and energies to the table. Where we are denied the simple beauty of clean air to breathe.
But I also know that if Orlando wishes to earn the progressive badge it has imagined for itself, it will not be by the hands of those comfortable with what is. It will be by the hands of you all — the people — because the people are the only ones who can see this city for what it could and should be. That’s what this campaign is about — elevating the dreams of District 5 residents like you, and making those dreams a reality through how our city is run. it’s what our platform was built on, and where it will continue to evolve from.
So no, I’m not here to make vague promises. I am asking you all to join me in dreaming and in fighting together to build a District 5 we haven’t seen yet.
If you’ve made it this far, I’ve got to believe that you’re ready to be in it with us – having conversations with District 5 in person and online, raising money, throwing events, and imagining what our city could be. Will you join our team?
I hope to talk to you soon,