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Portland is a special place. Many of us have called it home our entire lives, and many more have chosen to come to Portland to build a future for themselves and their families.

But Portland isn’t working for everyone, or every family. Too often, our city falls short of our promise and doesn’t live up to its ideals.

I’m running for City Council because we need a Portland that works for ALL of us.

We need a Portland where every family can live affordably, that is safe for our families, where neighbors look out for one another, with jobs that pay good wages and offer benefits, good schools where all kids have the opportunity to be successful, and a city where everyone feels that they belong.

Responding with Urgency to our Housing Crisis

My number one priority is housing affordability and homelessness. Everyone deserves a safe, affordable place to sleep at night. The housing crisis is affecting everyone in our community. The city and county governments collectively served 35,000 people last year with services like emergency shelter, rent assistance, permanent housing, and support services. Yet every day more people are struggling as the cost of rent outpaces income. Folks end up without affordable housing options or a place to stay for a variety of reasons, and the help we provide as a city needs to reflect this. We must respond with urgency, delivering new affordable housing funded by voters with the Portland and Metro housing bonds.

In order to adequately address this affordability crisis, we need to coordinate an urgent and effective, multifaceted approach with local, state, and federal partners, both public and private. We need to build more homes for individuals at all income levels so that working families and individuals can afford to stay here - in the community they love.

We also need to keep investing in homelessness prevention. I fully support expanding programs like affordable housing creation, short-term rent assistance, compassionate street response, substance abuse treatment, and wraparound mental health services. I also believe we should aggressively implement anti-displacement efforts.

There are some impressive efforts taking place at the City to address housing affordability and homelessness but we must act with greater urgency and expand our efforts. For example, the City currently funds a successful program called the Service Coordination Team that works with people experiencing homelessness who are suffering from mental illness and addiction and places them in housing and specialized treatment. A team of outreach workers work to get them off the streets and into housing. This is a crime reduction program but also a successful model of transitioning a very tough to reach population off the streets and into treatment services. I support expanding these services and other programs that address the root causes of poor housing affordability and homelessness.

Economic Prosperity for All of Us

I’m also running because I care about economic prosperity for ALL OF US. The Portland I envision takes care of hardworking and low-income families first. Communities of color and low-income Portlanders know that this city’s prosperity has often come at the expense of our communities, and our histories. Rampant displacement and gentrification have left behind far too many people. I support rapidly increasing contracting with minority- and women-owned businesses. Through strategic investments, we can create prosperity in East Portland, lifting up community-led economic development practices; and for low-income, people of color Portlanders in places like the Broadway Corridor through innovative tools like community benefits agreements.

I’m committed to supporting small business development. We will double down on investments in immigrant, indigeneous, and people of color businesses, especially businesses owned by women of color. We must invest in workforce development efforts that provide training and support to help those living on low incomes get good jobs and opportunities to provide for themselves and their families.

I’ll encourage the city to leverage its position of power to create pipelines for young people into the trades, which are good-paying, often union, positions.

Reduce Gridlock and Reduce Carbon Emissions

We have a vanishingly small window of opportunity to take on the climate crisis. The climate crisis affects all Portlanders, impacting communities of color and working and low-income families hardest of all. I will ensure that Portland continues to be a leader by supporting community-led efforts to accelerate our shared city and county goal to get 100% of our energy from renewable sources by 2035. I will support development of community-based energy sources and keep up the pressure on our region's energy providers to shift to renewable sources. I supported the passage of the innovative Portland Clean Energy Fund and I support continued efforts to create community-based climate programs and projects that create good-paying jobs for low-income and people of color Portlanders, economic opportunity for minority- and women-owned businesses, and elevating leadership of the most-impacted Portlanders in our climate efforts.

We must prioritize investments that make transit, bicycling, and walking fast and safe alternatives. We need to do that recognizing that most of our high-crash corridors are in low-income and people of color communities. It is in these communities that we must prioritize investments to create plentiful and reliable transportation options. People need access to economic opportunity, work, school, and recreation.

A Responsive, Representative City Council

Finally, I’m running for Portland City Council because Portlanders deserve better representation — representation that includes people who know what families today are struggling with — and the experience to know how to address it. A representative City Hall means that people see themselves reflected in government and are treated with dignity and respect. Every one of us needs to know who to call when we have a problem or we need help — and that when we call, we will be treated with respect, regardless of our education level, the color of our skin or the language we speak, our income, or our neighborhood.