350 Philly Endorses Kendra Brooks for City Council

On November 5th, let’s elect a champion for a Green New Deal to join Philadelphia City Council! 350Philly is excited to join many allies in endorsing Kendra Brooks for City Council at Large.

Kendra is a working class organizer, activist, and coalition builder who lives in the Nicetown community. She is running on the Working Families Party ticket to win one of two “at-large” City Council seats that are now held by Republicans.

With a great track record, a bold platform that is rooted in the visions and demands advanced by our city’s social justice movements, and support from a growing number of organizations and unions across Philadelphia, Kendra is in a strong position to win. Her election would mean replacing a Republican who is an ally of the fossil fuel industry with a committed fighter for environmental justice.

We encourage you to give Kendra one of your votes next month and to support her campaign in any way you can. 

More about Kendra Brooks

Kendra has spent years organizing and advocating for quality public education for all children and for economic and environmental justice. She deeply understands the connections between the climate crisis and the other emergencies that our city faces: poverty, unemployment, economic inequality, high levels of asthma, violence, trauma, underfunded schools, and more.

We got to know Kendra up close as an organizer in Nicetown, she participated with us in the campaign to stop SEPTA from building a polluting gas-fired power plant in her community. As a leader in city-wide organizations, she has been fighting to repair and renovate toxic school buildings.

As a Council Member, Kendra will fight for solutions to these intersecting crises, including a Philadelphia Green New Deal. Kendra’s platform says that we need to:

  • Stop all new fossil fuel expansion
  • Move Philadelphia to democratically controlled 100% renewable energy system by 2030 through unionized job creation that prioritizes Philadelphia’s working class and communities of color
  • Increase City Hall’s investments in community-owned renewable energy projects by communities of color and low-income neighborhoods

Kendra will also work to improve public transit and make SEPTA more affordable, guarantee affordable housing and fair wages for Philadelphia residents, and much more. In addition to creating a bold platform of her own, Kendra played a key role as a coalition builder in formulating the People’s Platform for a Just Philadelphia, a multi-issue platform that includes strong Green New Deal policies and is embraced by organizations across the city.

Kendra’s Campaign and Endorsements

Kendra’s campaign has gained incredible momentum! She has been endorsed by:

  • Organizations including Reclaim Philadelphia, the Sunrise Movement, One PA, Conservation Voters PA, Neighborhood Networks, and Democratic Socialists of America
  • Unions like Service Employees International Union 32BJ, UNITE HERE, and AFSCME 1199C
  • Progressive elected officials like City Council Member Helen Gym; State Representatives Elizabeth Fielder, Malcolm Kenyatta, and Chris Rabb; and US Senator Elizabeth Warren

Volunteers are knocking on thousands of doors, hosting phonebanks, and organizing fundraisers all over the city.

How the November 5th Election Works

Each registered voter in Philadelphia will have the chance to vote for:

  • one candidate to represent their local district in City Council
  • 5 candidates to represent all Philadelphians as at-large members of Council

There are seven at-large seats in total, but each voter can select only 5.

The City Charter specifies that no more than 5 members of single party can hold at-large seats. For decades, Democrats have held those 5 seats, while Republicans have held the 2 minority seats. But this year, the Working Families Party and a broad array of other groups are working to elect Kendra and her running mate, Nicholas O’Rourke, for the minority seats. This is the most serious progressive challenge for those seats in recent memory. Two other progressive independent candidates are running this year as well: Sherrie Cohen and Joe Cox.

Most observers expect all 5 Democrats who are on the ballot to win seats next month. Democratic candidates for City Council at large have each won more than 110,000 votes in recent elections. But Republican candidates have won less than 50,000. In 2015, the 5th ranked Democrat won 137,315 votes, and the highest ranked Republican garnered only 34,887. With enough work, we can elect candidates who will fight for justice in place of Republicans this year.

350 Philly’s Recommendations

We encourage you to:

  1. Vote for Kendra Brooks on 11/5
  2. Vote to re-elect City Council Member Helen Gym. Council Member Gym also earned our endorsement for the primary election in the spring and has fought for environmental and economic justice throughout her career
  3. Select a mixture of progressive third-party and independent candidates and Democrat candidates for your remaining 3 votes

In addition, we urge you to support Kendra’s campaign by donating, knocking on doors, making calls, hosting an event, or just spreading the word among friends and family. You can sign up here to get involved.

 

 

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