DC has an affordable housing crisis, and District residents pay some of the highest rent, mortgages, and property taxes in the country. In Single Member District 6B09, as our neighborhood gentrifies, we see more and more long-time residents of the neighborhood being priced out and displaced. Alison believes that housing is a human right, and that we need to fight to expand rent control and affordable housing programs in the District. We also need to devote considerably more resources to house our neighbors who are experiencing homelessness.
As a proud public school graduate and the daughter of a former high school biology teacher, Alison believes that the District needs to support and retain it's best teachers and provide an environment where every child has access to an excellent public school education regardless of their zip code.
The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed major inequities in DCPS students' ability to learn and succeed based on their wealth and access to internet and technology. Alison is grateful to mutual aid networks and fantastic non-profit organizations like Serve Your City DC and the Capitol Hill Arts Workshop for stepping up and helping to close gaps in access to technology, but believes that many of these voids should have been filled by the District government
Alison supports Black Swan Academy's police free schools campaign, and believes that armed police officers have no place in the District's schools.
Alison knows that she has much to learn about education policy in the District, and she looks forward to engaging with her neighbors about this important issue.
The issue of gun violence is personal to Alison. Over her years working with clients at the Public Defender Service and with formerly incarcerated youth at Free Minds Book Club, Alison has unfortunately lost a number of people who were close to her to gun violence over the years. Through this work, Alison knows that decades of pouring more and more resources into policing and incarceration, particularly in predominantly Black neighborhoods at the expense of investments in a strong social safety net has not made our communities safer. DC has the shameful distinction of having one of the highest incarceration rates in the most heavily incarcerated country on the planet. And if the purpose of all of this policing and punishment is purportedly public safety, we are getting a lousy return on our investment.
It is time for us to take a proactive approach to creating safe communities through robust investments in a social safety net in DC.
DC's job training programs, reentry services, housing programs, violence prevention programs and mental health services are chronically underfunded. Alison has seen the difference that even small investments in job programs like Project Empowerment and Pathways and in violence prevention programs like Cure the Streets have had on her clients. These programs make our communities safer and save lives. Alison supports full funding and implementation of the NEAR Act, and that we should take a public health approach to gun violence in the District.
Alison believes that climate change is an existential threat to our planet and our way of life, and that we can continue to push for environmental conservation, green energy and green jobs right here in ANC 6B through public education to expand the use of the Riversmart Homes program, solar rebates, transportation policies that promote greener commuting options by including designated bike and bus lanes, and by forcing developers who build in our neighborhood to meet a high bar for environmental sustainability. As someone who enjoys walking the Anacostia Riverfront Trail, Alison looks forward to the District continuing to improve the Anacostia River water quality.
Like many of her neighbors, Alison hopes that ANC6B09 can move towards a future that is more friendly to bikers and pedestrians. As ANC, she would fight to develop better connections between the neighborhood and local bike trails like the Anacostia Riverfront Trail. She would also support traffic calming measures on the residential streets that many drivers use to criss-cross our neighborhood like 17th Street and Potomac Avenue, in order to make them safer for pedestrians.
With hate crimes on the rise, Alison believes it is more important than ever that we stand up as allies for DC's members of the LGTBQ+ community. Alison is against hatred and discrimination in all forms, and is proud to stand with her LGBTQ+ neighbors as a Rainbow Caucus candidate. Alison supports the creation of additional safe, affordable housing options for our LGBTQ+ neighbors facing housing instability in the District and supports decriminalizing sex work.
During the feedback process for the Eastern Branch Boys and Girls Club in 2017, like the majority of her neighbors, Alison supported a plan to use the site of the Boys and Girls Club to create senior housing units, including a number of units designated as affordable housing units. Alison would look forward to working with DMPED and other stakeholders to push forward with this project in a way that reflects the values and preferences of ANC6B09 residents.
Alison also recognizes that in these unprecedented times of COVID-19, our seniors are more vulnerable than ever. She would look forward to finding new ways to network with seniors and connect them with government and mutual aid networks and resources, and to supporting affordable housing to allow them to age in place with dignity.
Alison strongly supports DC Statehood and home rule. DC residents pay the highest taxes per capita in the entire country, but lack voting members in Congress. This needs to change. Alison looks forward to the Douglas Commonwealth becoming our nation's 51st state.