Inclusion, Economic Justice and Racial Equity
For decades, Arlington County’s story has been a story of the fight for inclusion: Defiance of Massive Resistance, as the first Virginia locality to integrate our schools; waves of immigrants and refugees shaping the County’s culture and economy. In our current national political moment, Arlingtonians have risen to affirm that history, and those values, again and again.
On the County Board, I’ve fought to ensure that wherever possible, our County will be a beacon of support and fairness for our immigrant, refugee and mixed-status families, amid the darkness of exclusionary federal policies under the Trump administration. As Vice Chair of the Board in 2016, I led efforts to make Arlington the first jurisdiction in Virginia to fund legal services for immigrant families, to review our public safety and human services policies regarding interactions with federal enforcement agencies, and to improve communication and outreach with our concerned communities.
Now, as Arlington grows and changes, we face threats to the very diversity that inspired so many of us to make this community home. Affordability is the most critical: What this community looks like, and who calls it home, is in large part a function of the cost of its housing. But we need a broader agenda to ensure that the work of government and community is truly furthering our values of inclusion and equity.
My priorities include:
- Building on Arlington’s recent public health plan, Destination 2027, gather additional information on disparities in health and economic access throughout the County.
- Developing equity-based frameworks to evaluate whether our decisions (both policy and programmatic) are advancing or stymying equity goals.
- Continuing to stand with working people in Arlington County and advocate forcefully for, and prepare to effectively implement at the local level, potential state economic fairness reforms, like living wage ordinances, procurement reform and project labor agreements.