Frank's 2017 Campaign Announcement video will be posted here shortly, Stay Tuned.
Listen to Frank's Campaign Announcement delivered on City Hall steps - Wednesday July 8, 2015.
Ladies & Gentlemen, Members of the Press, registered Green Party members, all supporters red, white, or blue, and great citizens of the City of Syracuse. I stand here before you today as candidate for Syracuse’s 2nd District Common Council seat, and after campaigning daily for over 4 weeks already, tell you that I have a lot of work ahead of me.
During that time, I've heard up close how too many people in our community are struggling to pay bills, feed their families, and feel safe in their neighborhoods.
Just last week on Fitch Street in Skunk City, I spoke with a woman who was working a job at WalMart that paid minimum wage and left her under the income poverty line each month. And wondering how she would survive the next, all while being underappreciated and concerned to the point where she nearly burst into tears while talking to me on the street. Which is why I call for an increase to our minimum wage to a living wage, the 15Now initiative, and an increase in jobs through local hiring requirements.
I see everyday the houses that are vacant or uncared for by absentee landlords, and sidewalk conditions in the winter time forcing carless residents into the street to walk about their business.
Just this February, I was able to bring the media out with the Westside Residents Coalition on one of our weekly Westside Walks volunteer snow shoveling brigades as we opened up bus stop corners and cleared walks in front of vacant houses. Now here we sit half-way to Winter snow season again without a legitimate plan for making our communities walkable all year round. Which is why I call for a special community task force to work directly with community members in neighborhood forums to implement answers to the problems outside each of our homes.
I recognize the failure of our system which continually places people back into a position of helplessness instead of rehabilitation, and the failure of our leadership to provide adequate educational facilities and youth programs enabling success.
This past Sunday night on Merriman Street, I met a single mother whose brother had just finished six years in prison for possession. Now, he was having an impossible time getting a job because of this former mistake which he has paid for, and is at risk for returning to a life of illegal activity when no legal employer will give him a second chance. Which is why I support policies such as Ban-The-Box to give offenders a better second chance, and initiatives to interact with all people in need where they are located on the streets and in the parks.
I tell them like I'm telling you, that I am not making promises, but that I am here to take my social justice, food sovereignty, community finance, and cooperative living skills and experience with me to city government and bring to fruition a reality of Syracuse that offers #dignity for #allofus.
Today we launch our series of Community Forums to bring a proactive government presence to our neighborhoods. This evening at 7 pm we will meet at Brown Memorial Church on the corner of Davis St and South Geddes St. Later this month we will be at 754 Barbershop on North Salina St, and in early August in the Bowling Alley of the Polish Home on Park Ave.
Two nights ago I experienced the grief and frustration that our community is feeling during the #LightTheNight Silent March. The ultimate goal of city government should be to facilitate communication, be proactive instead of reactive, treat everyone as equals, and ultimately - to end poverty. And until that day comes I wont stop speaking or working towards those goals. Help me create lives of dignity in a city that works for All Of Us.
Thank you for your vote.