Crime is one of our biggest issues not only in my District but in the entire city of Detroit. Crime is a multi-layered problem and it must be assessed, dissected and cured. I truly believe you cannot address crime unless you first address the socioeconomic imbalances in our community. So as your next city council person I will do both. When I assume office the first thing I will implement is a "Peace Patrol" program. it will involve residents in that community to patrol their neighborhood. We were already successful with this program at Noble middle school in 2016 with no break-ins or robberies while on patrol. Volunteers will go through a rigorous rules of engagement training. But that's not all, I will take it a step further and fight for some of the city's general funding to employ those that are volunteering. This will not only help reduce crime but give additional employment to a city that really needs jobs.
Crimes at gas stations have been a huge ongoing problem in the city of Detroit. Residents feel unsafe and many go outside of Detroit to get gas.
In-fact many of the recent shootings and killings have been reported at gas stations. Close to 70,000 violent acts happen across the country at these stations every year, that's not even including the robberies that takes place. As a resident I am very familiar with the negative tone when going to our stations at night with places like the shell's gas station on Joy road and Southfield which has gained the nick name "Murder Mac" for its notorious reputation of violence and deaths that has occurred. In no way gas-stations should have bullet proof glass windows but no protection for the citizens. The first thing I will do is create an ordinance that mandate gas-stations to have armed-security in the late hours of the day. Having security at gas stations will reduce illegal activity and violent acts.
Jobs are scarce and it takes a innovative approach to create jobs nowadays. Over 39% of Detroit is below the poverty line (32% in D7), that means those family households make less than $12,000 annually combine! So there is a dire need for employment and funding here in Detroit more than anywhere else in the U.S. As a city council I may have limited powers to create jobs, however I will attract developers through tax-cut incentives if guaranteed to make residents in my district first priority for employment. Job training centers will be first on my list, given there has been a consensus from some developers and city officials that there is not enough qualified Detroiters for new job placements. I will fight for more accountability on the city to have more Information Technology and Vocational training institutes in our district. I believe this approach will bring not only qualified jobs, but qualified employees.
Small businesses are the hallmark of a strong economy, and 90 percent of new businesses fail due to lack of resources or above all exposure! I will introduce a concept that I have been practicing across the city called the "Cash-Mob." A initiative where my staff will host an event bi-weekly patronizing minority and new businesses in my district. The event will highlight businesses, bringing awareness and potential new customers.
Michigan has already been granted $761 million from the Hardest Hit Fund Loan program created in 2010 to assist with foreclosure prevention and neighborhood stabilization. In 2014 Michigan State Housing Authority (MSHA) requested to allocate a significant portion of the funding for removal of Blight that got approved by the U.S Treasury department initially for $75 million, fifty of that going to Detroit. In that same year Wayne County Treasurer Raymond Wojtowicz announced that there would be possibly 62,000 foreclosures, 37,000 of them being occupied. Since then Detroit has failed miserably in preventing foreclosures.
As your city councilwoman I will fight for more funding from Michigan Hardest Hit Fund Loan Program which was originally created to save homeowners from losing their homes (Not Blight). Which is exactly what I will do for residence that's facing foreclosures in my district. If you save homes, you reduce blight! Blight is a serious issue and putting pressure on the District manager to expedite the process to demolish property that poses a health risk to our neighborhoods will be a priority as well. We will allocate funds to beautify our neighborhoods through assistance loan programs like Michigan Homeowner Assistance Non-Profit that needs to provide more than 30k in interest free loans to our valuable residents. I believe in working closely with block clubs and neighborhood association to get more of the city funds allocated for their initiatives .
traffic & Parking Tickets
One of the biggest hurdles Detroiters face particularly the youth is traffic tickets. Nationally, 1 out of 10 motorist drive illegally researcher Robert Scopatz of Data Nexus Inc. With the Michigan State Responsibility fees (which is arguably unconstitutional) and Highest Auto-mobile Insurance in America, it almost seems Detroiters are destined for insurmountable debt. Driving with no insurance, substantial amount of parking tickets and suspended license are all hurdles that can prevent you from obtaining a job or commuting to work. In a city where our transportation system is not modernize unlike other major metropolitan cities, having a vehicle is essential. As your city councilwoman I will work hard to ensure more traffic amnesty programs to alleviate these types of conditions.