Issues - zainab4raleigh

Zainab’s Vision / Issues

Every person deserves access to transportation, meaningful jobs and personal growth to move freely into their future.

Accessible and Efficient Transportation

Infrastructure that gets us where we need to go, at the time we need to get there, is the backbone of a healthy economy. It powers businesses, connects workers to their jobs, creates opportunities for struggling communities and protects the nation from an increasingly unpredictable environment. As our city grows, we need to be thinking two steps ahead of the problems urban growth can bring. We will reduce the need for “car culture” and prioritize building a public transportation system that is timely, sustainable and accessible for all.

The Vision: 

  • Coordinating with transportation partners to establish an integrated system combining rideshares, scooters, bikes, busses and trains
  • Creating and maintaining more bike lanes and greenways
  • Bringing back electric scooters, with community members included in the conversation, to find a policy that supports both safety and accessibility.
  • Supporting the proposed light rail plan
  • Building bus shelters, and improve walkability to bus stops (some stops don’t even have sidewalks!)
  • Supporting our bus drivers with good working conditions and living wages
  • Improving accessibility to transportation information with a cleaner, integrated online presence and social media sharing 

Breaking the Cycle of Poverty

We stand with the fundamental principles of the Poor People’s Campaign: People should not live in or die from poverty, especially not in one of the world’s richest nations. We will not blame the poor and we acknowledge that we have an abundance of resources to overcome poverty. We will fight to dismantle unjust systems that exploit our working class poor communities and communities of color. 

  • Break the cycle of incarceration
    • Implement a misdemeanor diversion program
    • Incentivize businesses that support re-entry
    • Support “Ban the Box”, which would prohibit employers from asking applicants about their criminal record
    • Work to reduce arrests by coordinating priorities with law enforcement, shifting toward safety and away from nonviolent crimes like possession of marijuana, loitering, and punishing our homeless
  • End the paycheck to paycheck cycle
    • Implement a living wage for our neighborhood protectors and city staff: our policemen, our firefighters, and all the people who support the operations of our city
    • Support child care programs to assist working parents
    • Provide job training and career advising in a variety of vocations

Supporting Ethical and Equitable Business Practices

Raleigh is on the nation’s radar as one of the top places to work--we’re in a position to decide how we grow, and who we grow with.

  • Recruit companies that will not only create jobs, but are sustainable and socially minded. We will prioritize companies that:
    • Will support employees with living wages, parental leave and healthcare
    • Are environmentally conscious
    • Will create jobs at every level, not just for university graduates
  • Prioritize the success of our local businesses, established and in-the-making
    • Support local entrepreneurs with easy-to-reach information and advising about starting a business
    • Provide grants for women, LGBTQ+, and black and brown entrepreneurs
    • Incentivize mixed-use developers to build smaller, ground-level storefronts, rather than large, higher rent spaces--creating more accessible spaces for local business owners to open shop
    • Create more rotating pop-up spaces for local entrepreneurs

Every person deserves access to life’s basic essentials: food, shelter and safecommunities in which they can thrive.

Healthy Food for Every Neighborhood

For our neighbors without cars or without access to efficient public transport, it’s difficult to access fresh, healthy and affordable food options. While downtown Raleigh has become a renowned dining destination, we still have large food deserts in southeast and west Raleigh that have gone unaddressed for decades.  Food insecurity can cause health problems (which can lead to more debt), affect school performance and continue the cycle of poverty. We will prioritize ensuring all our neighbors can access nutritious and affordable foods, setting them up for a bright future.

  • Coordinate with existing neighborhood shops, farms, community gardens and distribution centers to stock affordable, fresh foods
  • Incentivize co-ops and local entrepreneurs to open affordable and healthy restaurants and grocery stores in our food deserts
  • Support we-come-to-you mobile markets and regular neighborhood farmer’s markets to provide more accessibility and flexibility

Related topics: more efficient transportation to reach grocery stores, improve walkability, encourage a living wage--money, not access is often the issue.

Accessible Housing for All

While we see many luxury apartments and homes popping up in our city, many families that have been here for generations are being pushed out of their homes for these new developments. We will support housing that’s within reach for our working families and students, not just for our wealthiest few.

  • Reduce single family zoning
  • Increase mixed-use zoning
  • Increase urban density — especially around transportation corridors — by allowing duplexes and triplexes in areas zoned for single-family homes
  • Support resources for families and individuals in need of a home — like accessible housing information, financial advising, eviction assistance and rapid-rehousing programs

Support for sanctuary + safer spaces

The people of Raleigh have the right to feel safe in their city. With our black and brown, LGBTQ+ and immigrant communities facing hate crimes and violence each day, it is especially important to have policies in place that prioritize the safety of our most vulnerable.

  • Support sanctuary policies, similar to Durham’s Resolution 9046, and stand against laws that force extended immigrant holds and cooperation with ICE
  • Safety and de-escalation training and resources for business owners, shelter employees, etc. regarding hate crimes and LGBTQ+ issues
  • Enact a non-discrimination ordinance to protect our LGBTQ+ neighbors from housing, public accomodation and employment discrimination
  • Encourage gun safety
  • Enact a Faith ID program
  • Hate crime enforcement and strengthening

Improving Community Relationships with Neighborhood Protectors

We have had four officer-involved shootings in Raleigh in the last 5 years. Additionally, our police force has not had the support it needs to succeed. Our city council has continually brushed these issues aside. We must build trust in our communities and fight the stigma associated with policing. It’s time to collaborate to keep our neighborhoods safe, stand with our Black and Brown neighbors, and rethink the way we approach law enforcement.

  • Fight the stigma associated with policing
    • Reduce use of vehicles, increase on-foot policing
    • Recruit more officers of color, who are a part of the communities they serve
  • Build trust in the community
    • Ensure the same neighborhood protectors are stationed regularly in the same communities, to build familiarity
    • Create a police oversight board with punitive and investigative powers 
    • Implement racial equity and de-escalation training programs for law enforcement officers and city staff

Every person deserves a government that removes barriers from pursuing a high quality of life — providing resources, a clean environment and equitable representation.

Mobilize for Environmental Sustainability

Raleigh should be a leader and take a strong stand against climate change.  We call ourselves progressive, but so far our policies don’t reflect that; our current climate goal is only 80% carbon reduction by 2050. Meanwhile, other large cities like LA and Seattle have committed to carbon neutrality by 2030. We can and will do better to protect our home and future generations.

  • Phase out single use plastics
  • Ensure the Office of Sustainability’s Community-Wide Climate Action Plan, due in 2020, is sufficiently bold and urgent
  • Incentivize businesses to participate in certificate programs like Living Building and LEED
  • Grow our recycling and composting programs
  • Protect our water sources, like Falls Lake
  • Support alternative energy options — we shouldn’t rely on one company for all our energy needs.
  • Climate justice

Related topics: Urban density to reduce urban sprawl & encroachment on natural spaces, more efficient transportation options to reduce car culture, incentivizing sustainably minded businesses and developers, supporting workforce development in green industrie

Preservation of Culture and Community Wellness

The ability to come together, celebrate, discuss, and support each other is one of the greatest pillars of our democracy. As we grow, we must prioritize spaces where our communities--the people who have been here for generations, people of color, LGBT!+, our young and our old, our creatives, our activists, our neighbors--can thrive.

  • Support affordable and accessible co-ops and collaborative spaces where community members can come together to learn and create
  • Partner with local mental health service providers, which are disproportionately out of reach for communities of color
  • Fund community gyms and parks
  • Support local artists

Accessible and Transparent Government

Local government is the most effective and immediate way for people to create positive change in society. We need a government that meets people where they are, clearly communicates resources and opportunities for involvement, and stands for equitable representation of all communities. Our city council is meant to serve all people in the city, not the other way around.

  • Schedule city council meetings and voting on easily accessible days
  • Increase online and social media presence to reach people where they are
  • Improve the website
  • Implement a voter education and awareness program on election years, to reach communities that aren’t often involved in the voting process
  • Public financing system for local elections, to break down barriers to entry for working class candidates
  • Supportive, community involved, transparent spending
  • Increased access to information