“My priorities are economic revitalization, exploring a trauma-informed public safety model, and addressing equity in education and housing.”
Strengthen & Reform Public Safety
We have an opportunity to create more programs to retain officers, to expand the RightCare program and to focus police training on retraumatization of individuals and addressing secondary trauma within the police department. There is a compounding effect on residents who have endured chronic trauma and encounter police and there are compounding secondary trauma effects within the police department that must be addressed. Training focused on this also helps officers identify trauma symptoms and will allow officers to better triage cases, as resources expand and become more available for mental/behavioral health.
We missed an opportunity last year to build bridges with the Black and minority communities and strengthen the police department. There is a trauma informed policing model that has been employed at some police departments in the United States - this model could find a home here in Dallas as well.
The trauma informed model addresses the re-traumatization of individuals, particularly youth, and addresses secondary trauma among police. This model can be expanded to also address secondary trauma among fire fighters and paramedics.
Within this model, we are seeing people as people, without titles, and can then begin to have a conversation around racial healing when we acknowledge and address trauma and the criminalization of youth, which predominantly affects the Black community.
If we can holistically address crime, mental/behavioral health and substance abuse, we are helping our police focus on where they are needed most – addressing crime. And expanding training on trauma and working with hospitals and mental health partners will provide police and the city with critical resources to actualize change in how we address crime in our community.
Improve Our Aging Infrastructure
We have planned for cars, not people. Changing that will take years and must be done with a sense of urgency. I’m encouraged by D2, but am concerned about the timeline and money spent on this. There must be clear milestones for achievement to ensure we are being mindful on dollars spent and delivering on this within a shorter time frame.
Our streets are horrible – there’s no denying this. I, like anyone who drives in Dallas, often cringe when I hit pothole after pothole. Some of our neighborhoods don’t even have sidewalks – some that do have breaks and buckles that make it unappealing to use. I’d like to see a more substantive plan for addressing sidewalks in our city. The effort to achieve more walkability is there, but we must include key target dates. We can provide more opportunities/feeders for runners and cyclists to get to our parks and trails safely. And I applaud DART board members efforts to focus the buses on where the people are. The care and intention is there.
Find Lasting Solutions to Homelessness
We need to employ a thoughtful approach to homelessness to address the issue and protects our neighborhoods. Instead of the city attempting to lead the way in addressing homelessness with large budgets for administrators, that money would be better spent as grants and resources to non-profits such as City Square, The Bridge and Austin Street Shelter. Then investing in innovative solutions to shorten the permitting process so that affordable housing developers are incentivized to develop more affordable housing within the city and we can address the homeless crisis with shelter, food and mental health.
Complete Recovery From COVID-19
Many of our local small business have been devastated by the restrictions to combat the pandemic. As more and more people become vaccinated, and we safely open up our economy the City needs to do more to help these businesses, who provide the bulk k of the jobs in our community recover. In addition, we need greater collaboration with the business community and the Small Business Administration to enhance workforce development. Programs focused on job interview training, job placement, entrepreneurial success help create a structured process and resources for those who have lost their jobs or had to close their businesses