Reason: Sarah is a stalwart supporter of human and civil rights for people experiencing without homes. She has called for creation of community safety hubs in neighborhoods, expansion of the Street Response program, and innovative models for urban camping, transitional housing, affordable housing, and a citywide shared burden for urban growth. Sarah has explicitly called for and end to the criminalization of poverty by: immediately ending the sweeps of houseless individuals; ending the practice of sending armed officers to engage with houseless individuals simply existing in public; directing officers not to enforce low-level victimless crimes, or crimes of poverty. In her administration, Portland Police Bureau shall not use any funds or other resources for arresting or citing houseless people for offenses related to their poverty and houselessness, or for engaging in actions that a houseless person might reasonably need to do outside. Further, complaints of violence against people experiencing houselessness should be taken seriously and addressed regardless of who reports such crimes. Please visit her policies about "Rethinking Public Safety" (https://sarah2020.com/publicsafety), and "Housing for All" (https://sarah2020.com/housing) for detailed policy information.
FOR A FAIR POLICE CONTRACT THAT SERVES THE PUBLIC
Reason: Even in Portland, our policing and criminal justice systems unfairly target and disproportionately impact Black people, Indigenous people, people of color, and other historically and currently oppressed community members. Our elected officials must commit to ending the disparate treatment of marginalized Portlanders and instead direct our precious resources towards addressing violent and abusive crimes in a trauma-informed manner. We must end “broken windows policing,” increase transparency, and ensure that Black Lives Matter is a public policy, not just a slogan. Sarah is a staunch supporter of organized labor and particularly recognizes the importance of public sector workers in rebuilding our social safety net and enhancing our city’s social services. Police and other emergency responders are important components of the services the City provides. Like all workers and public servants, police should be compensated fairly. However, the police union contract should not include provisions that decrease police accountability or subvert the public’s ability to enact true civilian oversight. Sarah has proposed a comprehensive suite of police reform policies that the Portland Mercury described as a “sweeping public safety plan.” You can read the Mercury article here: https://www.portlandmercury.com/blogtown/2019/11/19/27504465/mayoral-candidate-sarah-iannarone-releases-sweeping-public-safety-plan The plan can be accessed in writing (complete) and via podcast (summary) at https://sarah2020.com/publicsafety
OREGON DISTRICT ATTORNEY FOR THE PEOPLE
Reason: AS Portland Mayor and Police Commissioner, I look forward to working with whomever is elected Multnomah County DA on behalf of families, formerly incarcerated people, and allies to realize progressive reforms in the criminal legal system.
TENANT PROTECTION ORDINANCE
Reason: In her “Housing for All '' plan (https://sarah2020.com/housing), Sarah highlights that renters rights are consumer protections and our last line of defense against homelessness. Nearly half (47%) of Portland households are occupied by renters. Even as our economy expands, people at the lowest end of the economic spectrum are facing rising rents alongside stagnant wages; many continue to move out of Portland to more affordable rental housing in East Multnomah County, increasing commute times counter to our climate action goals. We must foreground the fight for increased stability and protections for renters as a matter of local prosperity and resilience. Portland Housing Bureau's Rental Services Office (RSO) and Rental Services Commissions (RSC) are first steps, but we must do more to ensure these protections are robust, transparent, accountable, and fully-funded. Sarah supports the following policies to ensure Portland renters are protected: Ongoing commitment to a “Tenants’ Bill of Rights” which Sarah has consistently backed as a member of the local tenants union and supporter of local tenants advocacy non-profits. Ensuring the rental registration platform currently being explored by the Portland Housing Bureau is open, effective, accountable, and fully funded. Supporting tenants’ right to organize. Housing insecurity can breed fear and anxiety. Tenants who share an address or landlord can organize to protect themselves while cultivating a greater sense of community and security in the face of uncertainty. The City of Portland should bring the necessary resources to bear to ensure that HUD regulations on this front are enforced. Preventing evictions whenever possible. Portland’s Mandatory Renter Relocation Assistance policy (also known as RELO), led by Commissioner Eudaly and tenants’ rights advocates, was a good start; we must do more. Eviction fuels expensive problems, such as homelessness, truancy, and poverty. We must actively track and reduce the number of evictions in public and subsidized housing as well as in the private rental market. In addition, we should explore funding mechanisms to provide low-income people the right to counsel in housing disputes. Creating a Rental Subsidy Reserve Fund. In addition to stricter short-term rental (e.g. AirBnB) regulation enforcement, City of Portland will revise city code Ch. 6.05.06 and 6.05.120 ‘Tourism Improvement District’ increasing rate from .02 to .04 with the additional .02 revenue going to renter protections programs and a rental subsidy reserve fund managed by the RSO and overseen by the RSC. Keeping rent (move-in and monthly) within reach for eligible families without a waitlist helps people evade homelessness and keeps our city in compliance with the Fair Housing Act.
UP NOW! UNIVERSAL PRESCHOOL IN MULTNOMAH COUNTY
Reason: Sarah has publicly endorsed this campaign, and attended UP Now! campaign events held by the organizations leading the charge.
CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM
Reason: In 2019, half of Portlanders surveyed felt they had little or no power to influence City decisions on issues important to them. If we want to put power in the hands of everyday Portlanders, we must invest in a healthy, grassroots democracy from Garden Home to Hayden Island, Cathedral Park to Powell Butte. We must commit to critical progressive reforms to ensure that the City of Portland is as effective, efficient, and equitable as possible. Sarah is honored to be the first candidate in history to qualify for and has built her campaign around Portland’s Open and Accountable Elections public campaign financing program. Voters own this election and their public investment in our democracy has made it possible to run a grassroots campaign citywide against a millionaire incumbent with deep pockets and big-money donors. OAE changes what is politically possible and is bringing new voices and new ideas into our city’s halls of power. In its current structure however the program is vulnerable to many kinds of internal undermining. If elected, Sarah will lay the foundations for the program to be successful for future generations of Portlanders. The program must be sustainably funded and housed in a permanent, independent office that insulates it from the daily politics of City Council. Big money in politics is an existential threat to our democracy. As a People’s Mayor, Sarah is fiercely committed to ensuring that Portlanders are empowered to be change agents in their own lives and communities with direct access to the levers of power that for too long have been reserved for political insiders, wealthy donors, and corporate lobbyists. Sarah has received extensive political coverage for actively holding all candidates in local elections accountable to adhering with the Honest Elections program and even ran a fundraising campaign “$8.74” acknowledging that in Portland, 87.4% of voters approved campaign contribution caps of $500 via ballot measure 26-200 in 2018. Historically, the city’s wealthiest individuals and organizations have contributed the large amounts of money needed to mount a viable citywide campaign. These elite few have also been more likely to enlist the services of professional lobbyists to advance their agenda within City Hall regardless of who is elected. The cumulative effect is that wealthy special interests drown out the voices of everyday Portlanders.. Even as these limits are being reviewed currently by the Oregon Supreme Court (prompted by organizations like the Portland Business Alliance), Sarah is going a step further: in the May election, she is capping donations at $250, making sure that her campaign has a broad, grassroots base of support. If elected, Sarah will not only abide by the will of Portland voters and follow the legal contribution limits, but also will work to enhance them by automating auditing of today’s exclusively complaint-initiated process. As of February 20, Sarah’s campaign has over 1400 donors. In her Good Government by the People policy (https://sarah2020.com/goodgov), she elaborates on her commitment to open, honest, inclusive, innovative electoral politics which also includes opening the ballot to all residents, electronic petitions, and considering alternative voting models such as ranked choice or STAR voting.
Reason: For decades, Portland has called itself a leader in climate action, touting our “legacy of leadership” to the world. Sadly, we have failed in this undertaking: not only are we falling short of our carbon reduction targets, but Portland’s carbon emissions are rising. Acting with urgency and partnering with our frontline communities is the only ethical and practical response to the climate crisis unfolding around us. As Portlanders, we have a responsibility to do better. We must stop putting out empty plans and proclamations while our children’s futures hang in the balance. We must shift our priorities away from economic growth and expansion to maximizing human and environmental health and justice. We cannot accept tepid leadership and centrist incrementalism if we hope to stave off ecological collapse. In her “Green New Deal for Our Portland” policy (https://sarah2020.com/policies/green-new-deal), Sarah has proposed a publicly-owned municipal bank to keep our hard-earned money circulating locally, decrease borrowing costs, and ensure that profits reaped from our sustainability investments at home aren’t negated by fossil fuel investments abroad. We can’t be financing our future by sending hundreds of millions of dollars to the same big Wall Street banks who have long opposed and undermined our values.
Reason: As an international urban policy expert, Sarah is acutely aware that the internet in the United States is too expensive and too slow to have the democratizing effects that it has in other parts of the world. The small cartel of private internet utilities that service the Portland metro area are estimated to extract tens of millions of dollars per year in profits while being some of the most unpopular companies. We need bold government for 21st century solutions, including municipal broadband. The benefits to the city of a fast, reliable, and resilient publicly-owned network are enormous. With a public internet utility, the residents of Portland can be sure that their data isn’t being sold, their content isn’t being filtered, and that their money is staying local to recirculate in their community. You can learn more about Sarah’s positions on municipal broadband, facial recognition technology, and other matters of technological sovereignty and digital rights at sarah2020.com/goodgov.
COMMUNITY BENEFITS AGREEMENT (CBA) FOR THE SUPERFUND CLEAN-UP OF THE WILLAMETTE RIVER
Reason: Good government for the people means public investments are transparent and function best with community oversight.Robust project labor agreements (PLAs) including community benefit agreements should apply to all local capital improvement projects built with public money. Despite gains under previous administrations, and despite advances on public projects from county and regional governments, the City of Portland under the current mayor has diluted the City’s Community Benefits Agreement (CBA) process on public investments, raising the project cost at which they could be applied ($25M) and applying to others a watered-down Community Equity and Inclusion Plan (CEIP) process. In no uncertain terms, this trend should be reversed to ensure our tax dollars work not only to build public infrastructure but serve to support minority and women in the trades and and growth of contracting companies owned by members of disadvantaged communities. We could follow the lead of cities such as Seattle, with its robust Community Workforce Agreements (CWA) process which includes lower project cost thresholds ($5M) as well as monthly oversight committee meetings to ensure compliance and accountability. As the answers throughout this questionnaire demonstrate, Sarah is the candidate with the most complete policy platform in line with the Portland-Metro People's Coalition. If you appreciate the work it takes to craft these policies and the grassroots, people-powered effort it takes, please consider signing up to volunteer or donate at sarah2020.com/volunteer or sarah2020.com/donate.