Reason: I 100% support the decriminalization of houselessness and poverty. Every human deserves to be treated with dignity and ensuring that people who lack access to adequate shelter have access to clean water, sanitation, and health services (including mental health services), clothing and food needs to be the #1 priority of the City, County and Metro. I support ending sweeps, and Jo Ann Hardesty's Street Response, which will lead to a more humane response to those struggling with mental health issues who also live on the streets. Local municipalities need to work together to better address the immediate needs of our unhoused neighbors that include temporary shelters on private or public lands where all the basic services they need will be provided.
FOR A FAIR POLICE CONTRACT THAT SERVES THE PUBLIC
Reason: According to the Portland Police Association, over 70% of Portlanders don’t trust the police. That is unacceptable. Trust starts with accountability: the Portland Police need to be held accountable for racist behavior, for use of excessive force, and for killing people. Right now, it isn’t possible for the City to fire problem police officers. Even known racists who were fired ended up ultimately being reinstated to the police. In the short-term, we need some wins on the police contract to increase accountability, like drug testing after an officer uses deadly force, the ability to fire problem officers, and real independent civilian oversight. I also support the Portland Street response, so armed officers aren’t unnecessarily showing up to deal with folks having a mental health issue or simply struggling with housing. I also strongly support the demilitarization of the police. Lastly: I will do all I can to support restorative justice practices in the local criminal justice system.
OREGON DISTRICT ATTORNEY FOR THE PEOPLE
Reason: I wholeheartedly support and appreciate the efforts of the DA for the People campaign. I have helped organize events featuring its work, and I hope we can succeed in electing a progressive DA that will be held accountable to the people of this region. The United States incarcerates people at a higher rate than any other country, which has to change. We know from local reports that black, brown, and indigenous people are way more likely to be racially profiled by police, and once they are in the criminal justice system, they are way more likely to be found guilty of crimes and receive higher sentences than white people guilty of the same crimes. Young people are often caught up in the criminal justice system when all they really need is a restorative justice program and to have all their basic needs met. Those with mental health issues need treatment and shelter; it’s unacceptable that jail is often the only place they can find either or those things. We must decriminalize houselessness, sex work, and drug use in order to focus on helping people rather than punishing them. Electing a DA that cares about solving all of these injustices will be a big step toward a more just criminal justice system.
TENANT PROTECTION ORDINANCE
Reason: I strongly support expanding the scope of work and fully funding the Rental Services Office. Too many renters are getting kicked out of housing because they don’t know their rights and they feel isolated and powerless. Having a strong, robust RSO as a resource for renters will help renters stay in their homes and will help landlords understand what is expected of them and that they will be held accountable if they don’t meet those expectations. I'm also a huge fan of data driven decision-making, no only do we need community engagement but we also must have good data to inform our policies and programs. I support policies and programs that help keep people in their homes and empower tenants to stand up for their rights.
UP NOW! UNIVERSAL PRESCHOOL IN MULTNOMAH COUNTY
Reason: I have publicly endorsed UP Now! The data is unquestionably clear: children who receive high-quality preschool have better outcomes in every aspect of their lives. They are more likely to graduate from high school, to stay out of the criminal justice system, and to end up with stable livelihoods. Every single child deserves the best possibility for success. Providing universal preschool for every three- and four-year-old in Multnomah County will benefit our communities for generations to come and help set a standard that needs to spread nationwide. Specifically, I support a policy that offers universal preschool to all 3 and 4 year olds in Multnomah county, year round, and that requires paying the service providers a living wage with benefits.
CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM
Reason: I played a leadership role in passing Honest Elections in Portland. I also chose to take no corporate cash when I ran for this same seat in 2018, before the ballot measure had passed – I wanted to make it clear that I stand with the people of this city. Since then, I worked to help pass campaign finance reform at the state-level during the 2019 legislative session. After the dramatic Republican walkout, we succeeded in getting a ballot referral from the Oregon State Legislature to put a measure on the 2020 ballot to amend the Oregon State Constitution to explicitly legalize campaign contribution limits. I am actively working on that ballot measure and will do whatever I can to help it pass. Getting big money out of politics is a core value of mine, and I won’t rest until we succeed.
Reason: I campaigned in favor of a municipal bank when I ran for this seat in 2018. Since then, I’ve been playing an active role in the Municipal Bank Campaign for over a year as the former Executive Director of Portland Forward. In order for Portland to charter a municipal bank, the State Legislature must pass legislation enabling municipalities to do so. While I was at Portland Forward, I helped draft and work on a municipal bank bill in the 2019 legislative session that created a clear path for cities to form municipal banks in Oregon. I was able to get 11 sponsors and cosponsors on the bill, including Sen. Shemia Fagan, Rep. Diego Hernández, and Rep. Alissa Keny-Guyer. During that Session, we got a productive informational hearing in the House Business and Labor Committee. We educated a lot of elected officials, and the campaign will work on a similar bill again in the next regular session. In the meantime, a statewide coalition is coalescing to show the broad support for a municipal bank bill so it is more likely to pass in the 2021 legislative session. I don’t just support this idea conceptually - I am organizing and advocating for it as well.
Reason: I campaigned on this issue when I ran for this seat in 2018. The same week that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) ended net neutrality, I announced my commitment to Municipal Broadband, a fully-wired internet by and for the people. Since then, my work with Municipal Broadband PDX has led to Multnomah County taking the lead on a feasibility study to assess the opportunities and challenges of forming a publicly-owned internet for every resident and business in the County. Commissioner Meieran led the effort because this is an equity issue – access to the internet in this day and age is a necessity, whether looking for a job, trying to access services, or doing homework. Access to the internet should be treated as a utility and be accessible to all. As a volunteer advisor and organizer to the Municipal Broadband PDX campaign, I have helped organize accessible town hall events to get input for the feasibility study and to educate communities in Northeast and outer Southeast Portland on the topic. I am not just supportive of this policy conceptually - I have and will continue to actively work to make Municipal Broadband a reality in the Portland metro region.
COMMUNITY BENEFITS AGREEMENT (CBA) FOR THE SUPERFUND CLEAN-UP OF THE WILLAMETTE RIVER
Reason: I fully support enforceable Community Benefits Agreements for all large publicly-funded projects. In the case of the Superfund, a CBA should focus strongly on hiring workers from the Indigenous and African American communities, which have been the most negatively impacted by industrial pollution in the Willamette and Columbia.