Candidate Statements: Oakland District 2 City Council Candidate Statement: Aimee Allison

By Aimee Allison
Tuesday October 31, 2006

On Nov. 7, District 2 voters in Oakland face a clear choice for City Council. It is an opportunity to create a progressive majority in one of the nation’s most diverse cities. And it is a choice between two very different futures for Oakland.  

One Oakland is a city controlled by developers and gripped by fear. A “bedroom community” for San Francisco—a town that says yes to any developer instead of working to create good jobs for the families who live here. This is the Oakland that has watched 120 people killed this year, and failed to show leadership in taking on the real causes of violence.  

In this Oakland, big-money developers get too much, and our children get too little. Sadly, this is the Oakland my opponent represents.  

The other Oakland is a model for what is possible. Community policing and peacekeeping teams that make us safer. New jobs in the green economy that create economic opportunities, and make our environment cleaner. A stronger “Sunshine Ordinance” to end City Hall corruption. And Mayor-elect Dellums has a chance to succeed.  

I represent this Oakland, and with your vote on Nov. 7 we can make it a reality.  


Who I am 

Every Election Day, my father would remind me how previous generations struggled for the right to vote. I took that sense of duty to heart, and have spent my life working for social justice. I am:  

• A wife and a mother with a beautiful son. 

• An honorably discharged Army conscientious objector, who publicly protests war and privately counsels soldiers.  

• A businesswoman who has helped dozens of small businesses.  

• A teacher and a mentor. I taught high school social studies, and currently mentor Oakland youth about alternatives to violence. 

I have deep roots in District 2. Together with groups like Sierra Club, ACORN, SEIU, the Labor Council, the Oakland Education Association and the Nurses Association (all of whom endorsed me), I have fought for change in District 2.  


What I stand for 

In June, almost two-thirds of District 2 voted for progressive leadership. I will work in partnership with Mayor-elect Ron Dellums and Councilmember Nancy Nadel to enact a strong, solutions-driven agenda. My priorities are:  


Preventing violence  

Oakland’s leadership is failing to address the horrific murder rate in Oakland. I have a clear plan to address the root causes of violence:  

•Effective policing. Right now the police chief doesn’t have the power or the support to get officers out of their cars and on to the streets. I will push to revise the Oakland Police Officers contract, giving the Chief the power to implement community policing and to put officers on the street at night and on weekends.  

• Peacekeeping Teams. Much of the crime we’re seeing is retaliation for other crimes. I’ve proposed a conflict resolution and crisis response team that can stop retaliation before it starts.  

• Re-entry internships and job training. Over 10,000 people in Oakland are currently on parole or probation. I’ll work to reintegrate parolees and probationers in Oakland with accessible housing, job training, drug rehabilitation and medical care.  

• Provide alternatives, like expanded recreation, sports and cultural programs for young people. These are proven deterrents to crime.  


Double funding for children and youth  

The current Oakland Fund for Children and Youth does a lot, but it could go further. I am calling for twice as much funding so that the fund—along with Measure Y—could make a real difference.  


Create jobs that protect the environment 

Oakland is poised to be a national leader in “green jobs,” creating a Silicon Valley of green capital right here in Oakland as a way to lift people up out of poverty. I will work to:  

• Attract green businesses and new clean energy and clean tech jobs.  

• Use the growing green economy to create a youth jobs corps, and living wage jobs.  

• Ask the Port to pay its fair share, and advocate for a “healthy port” that doesn’t pollute our communities.  


Stop the corruption in City Hall 

The recent FBI probe is embarrassing, and it erodes confidence in our leaders. If elected I will work to:  

• Make government accountable by strengthening the Sunshine Ordinance.  

• End backroom deals that waste taxpayer dollars.  


Who funds my campaign—and who funds my opponent  

Simply put: I will not be bought. I accept no contributions from corporations. My funding comes largely from my friends and neighbors who believe in change.  

My opponent? Sadly, we can see where her priorities lie:  

• Almost 40 percent of her funding comes directly from developers, corporations and builders.  

• In the current election, over half of Councilmember Kernighan’s funding comes from outside of District 2.  

• Even her own supporter, former candidate Shirley Gee, said that Councilmember Kernighan is “heavily influenced by Council President Ignacio De La Fuente and housing developers.”  

My business experience has taught me to fight for the small businesses—not corporations—and that’s the leadership I’ll bring to City Council.  


Why make a change?  

I stand for people over profits—the grassroots and the families in District 2.  

We have the opportunity for real solutions and real leadership—and the chance to win a bold and truly progressive victory that will echo across the region.  

In a time where so much is wrong, I ask District 2 voters to vote for leadership for a change. 

For more information, see www.Aimee Allison.org. 




Oakland District 2 City Councilmember Pat Kernighan declined the inivitation to submit a statement to the Daily Planet.