Lead by Values
Every policy position that I take and every vote I cast as your City Councilmember will be made after careful consideration and reflecting on my core values:
✅ Engaging and Supporting Community
✅ Protecting Vulnerable Residents
✅ Building a Resilient Community
✅ Supporting Working Families
✅ Taking Action
Engaging and Supporting Community
The people of San Leandro should be involved in the decisions of their government. We need to encourage participation, do more to support community groups, and reach out to underrepresented communities to make sure their voices are heard. I will look to the residents of San Leandro for input on important decisions.
Protecting Vulnerable Residents
Not everyone has the same ability to be engaged civically. Different neighborhoods and people have varying levels of control capacity, connections, and social and economic power to influence government decisions. I will make sure that our less affluent and more marginalized neighbors will have a voice on the council.
Everyone deserves stable housing. I will vote to protect tenants from evictions and massive rent increases and homeowners from foreclosures. I support assistance for our homeless population and will champion strategies to get people off the streets and keep people in stable homes.
Building a Resilient Community
We have challenges ahead of us. We’re still dealing with Covid-19 pandemic which we can expect to have economic repercussions. There is also the looming threat of climate change that will affect our community. We must be prepared. I am not satisfied with our city’s response to coronavirus. We need to and can do better. When the shelter in place orders went into effect I sprang into action making checkup calls to vulnerable residents, delivering groceries and providing meals to those in need.
When something goes wrong, we need to take care of each other. Our community connections can save lives. We need more robust neighborhood emergency planning that would help us respond to a pandemic, economic downturn, fire, earthquake or other disaster. Our city can help coordinate this and provide resources for networks of community groups.
We must also make sure that everyone in San Leandro feels invested and connected with their community. That means making sure we can keep homeowners and renters in their homes. We need protections from foreclosures and evictions. Our city can help provide a safety net and assistance for homeowners and renters.
Protecting Our Environment. I will work to support regional, state and national efforts to reduce carbon emissions and our reliance on fossil fuels. We can be leaders in a transition to a sustainable economy. I support sustainable infrastructure projects that will provide good jobs and clean energy for our community. We need a Green New Deal for San Leandro.
Bridging the Digital Divide. With COVID-19, it is more important than ever that we make sure that all San Leandro residents have access to reliable internet connections. Families with school aged children without reliable internet are in danger of falling behind. Seniors without connections are more isolated and may not get the resources they need. As a Parks and Recreation Commissioner I successfully pushed to get public wifi at all our parks. I want to make sure that everyone has access to a reliable internet connection.
Supporting Working Families
One of the top reasons people move to San Leandro is to raise families. Juggling family and work life was difficult enough under normal times. Under Covid-19 and without public support it has become untenable. I will support our public schools, fight for universal after-care programs, and develop solutions with the community to increase potential for telecommuting, even after Covid. I support our local businesses. Having a vibrant local economy provides jobs, reduces commutes, and provides local services that our residents need.
We need our city to be responsive to the needs of our community. As a community organizer and advocate I have made myself available as a point of contact for concerns of residents. I will continue and expand upon this as your City Councilmember. Our city needs to be forward thinking, working to prevent problems as well as providing timely response.
Keeping Our Community Clean. Our living environment affects our quality of life. I am dedicated to improving the quality of life for everyone in San Leandro. This means maintaining our neighborhoods and public spaces. We can do more to make sure that our city is keeping our public parks, neighborhoods and commercial spaces clean and accessible. I’ve led community clean ups to help maintain our public spaces and have responded to resident’s concerns about waste, litter and dumping. The city should make sure blighted areas are cleaned up.
Other Issues of Concern
Budget as Reflection of our Values
We are going to have challenges maintaining a workable city budget. Before Covid our budget was in a precarious position. This pandemic and the economic situation that will result have further strained our ability to balance our budget. We can expect this to continue to be a major issue. Our city has a role in providing support to its residents, but we are going to have to make some hard choices. Every budget decision I make will be through the lens of how it impacts our community.
This is a time when the people of San Leandro need support and services from their government. I do not support furloughs or layoffs of our city administrative staff. Now is not the time to cut services but we must make sure they are administered as efficiently as possible. We should look to cut down on bureaucracy and implement programs that have benefits for everyone. We started a community budget task force that I will look to for recommendations on needed cuts while supporting our staff. Redefining public safety could help us reallocate funding from the police department to be used for proactive public safety services that our residents need.
We Can’t Police Our Way Out of All Social Problems
We cannot place the burden of all our social problems on the police department. We need to make sure that we have programs to respond to mental health incidents, support the homeless and provide animal control. Qualified specialists, such as social workers and animal control, can more effectively respond to many situations. We should reallocate budget from the police department to fund these services while allowing our officers to focus on crime prevention and response.
Increasing Public Safety
The number of vehicle thefts and break-ins are off the charts compared to the rest of the state. We also have more burglaries and robberies. I will work with residents, community groups, and the police department to implement policies proven to reduce these types of incidents. The good news is that our community is less physically violent. We are below state averages for assaults, rapes and murders. But we must stay vigilant. Focusing police on these types of violent crimes will support them in defending our community against aggressive criminal actions. We need to redefine what public safety means and tie it into our ability to prepare and respond to emergencies large and small.
We need more affordable housing. When approving development projects my priority is our community. Our city is going to grow, but we must make sure that we’re including people who can afford to live and work in the area. Developments that don’t include an affordable component means expensive units and more people that have to commute to San Francisco or Silicon Valley. Whether affordable by design, such as smaller units, or including subsidized housing, every building project should include an affordable housing component. I’m not in favor of growth for growth’s sake, having grown up here I’m not eager for rapid change. It’s important to recognize the reality of the situation though. Our city is within commuting distance to two of our country’s major economic areas. That means our land value is rising and there is money to be made in developing our land. So, before I approve any Development we need to make sure it provides lasting benefit to the community, is good for the environment, and has workers making prevailing wages. We also need to make sure that the community is involved in long-term planning of our city’s growth.
Holding Our Representatives Accountable
Our city should be accountable to the residents and that includes our elected officials as well as the city staff. I am running because I do not believe that our district has the best representation that it could have. We need someone who will bring up and work toward solutions that benefit our community. I’m disappointed that this is not happening and believe that with your support and input I can be a constructive voice on the council, proactively looking for solutions.