Cambridge is a city of great wealth and great economic inequality. While our renowned status as a technology and education hub creates enormous economic opportunities, they have not been shared equally. Efforts are made to give back, but they are often not enough. Despite our technological, educational, and commercial successes, income inequality remains one of our main challenges. Instead of serving merely to increase corporate profits, economic development should be harnessed to promote economic sustainability, neighborhood stability, public health, and human dignity. To make lasting change, we must promote reinvestment in our community and lead the course of our economic growth.
As your City Councillor, I will:
Ensure that new economic development will benefit all Cambridge residents.
Recognizing residents’ very real concerns about the influence of private funding on city policies surrounding housing and economic development, I will vote for a referendum to explore public campaign financing for city-wide elections. I will support legislation like New York City’s Small Business Jobs Survival Act to protect local independent businesses in the face of increasing rents, taxes, and other costs. I will vote to create vacancy and underutilization fees to prevent real estate speculation and encourage long-term development and efficient land use. I will enact financial measures to link institutional and corporate profits with funding for crucial economic justice programs, including municipal broadband.
Facilitate local, collective decision-making.
Cambridge residents need not only have their voices heard by elected officials, but must also become active participants in the decision-making processes that affect us all. It is time for all of us to have a say in how our city’s wealth is shared. Every city policy should be developed and implemented with input from everyone it will affect. I will vote to expand our existing participatory budgeting program, involvement in which will become even more accessible with the successful implementation of municipal broadband.
Create opportunities for long-term, high-quality employment.
I will work to forge partnerships between residents, city government, and the private sector to create partnerships for long-term employment of Cambridge residents, especially those who far too often have been left behind. I will collaborate with specific local partner bring regular job fairs and skills training to our underserved neighborhoods and communities. I will collaborate with the School Committee to push for the creation an integrated Computer Science for All program, ensuring that today’s children are prepared for tomorrow’s economy. Every child in Cambridge deserves to be equipped with 21st Century Skills—the tools to make it in our innovation economy. Our city’s economic competitiveness is based on workforce development, and our residents should benefit more from the private sector growth in our city.
Bridge the digital divide.
30% of Cambridge Housing Authority residents do not have access to the Internet. For too long, our city has not been serious about expanding high-speed municipal broadband, especially to underserved neighborhoods. I will work to leverage public-private partnerships to expand broadband networks throughout our city.
Support working people in the collective struggle for unionization and a living wage.
The Trump administration is determined to gut federal worker protections. State and local governments need to step up to ensure that Cambridge worker people. I will partner with unions and other workers’ organizations to improve enforcement of our wage theft ordinance. I will vote to enact legislation to improve working conditions and ensure that companies in the sharing economy are treating their contractors equitably. I will work to create legal frameworks to expand collective bargaining rights. I will vote in support of grassroots local and national efforts by groups such as Fight for 15, to ensure that all Cambridge residents can afford to support themselves and their families.
Small Business Resource Center
Small businesses remain the backbone of our nation’s economy. I will work to create the Small Business Resource Center, a one-stop shop, to ensure that Cambridge is a city where small businesses can start, thrive, and sustain. Whether it’s the next technology startup or the third-generation neighborhood mom-and-pop shop, all entrepreneurs need information, capacity, funding, and open access to city services.