As we work to improve our town we must consider the impact of our decisions on all our residents and visitors, including seniors, children, those with disabilities, immigrants and those who do not have enough resources to meet their needs.
Our town should strive for sustainability, to reduce our impact on the planet and our contribution to climate change.
It is important to focus on equity & inclusion to ensure everyone including marginalized groups are treated with respect and dignity, and can participate fully in our community.
Equity & Inclusion
We should ensure that all Brookline residents are treated with respect, dignity, and can participate fully in our community including access to our town government structures and decision-making.
We must prioritize and embed racial equity across all our town policies, services and programs. I helped create a review tool for the Town's federal COVID American Rescue Plan relief funds that included equity considerations for those most impacted by COVID.
I support the Town doing robust community engagement to marginalized groups. I helped the Town partner with the Brookline Community Foundation to run a community engagement process to get resident input on how the Town's $43 million in federal COVID American Rescue Plan relief funds should be spent ensuring that lower income residents, public housing residents, older adults and teens had an opportunity to provide input.
One of Town Meeting's important responsibilities is reviewing and passing the Town budget. Our budget process needs to be more accessible and inclusive to residents that want to make budget requests.
As we continue to recover from COVID, I support the ability of the Town to continue remote participation in meetings to build on the unprecedented level of attendance at various town meetings and committees during COVID. Remote access allows those with caregiving and work responsibilities more opportunity to participate in our town structures. I voted for the Warrant Articles that will allow hybrid access to continue.
Everyone has a right to safe and affordable housing.
Last year, I voted for and actively worked for passage of the Community Preservation Act, to provide additional funds for affordable housing, open space and historic preservation.
The town is in the process of creating a new Housing Production Plan. I advocated with Town staff, the Housing Advisory Board and the consultants hired by the Town that this process include deep community engagement and input from many stakeholders with special effort to include the input of marginalized groups.
We should proactively look for opportunities to increase and maintain affordable housing through partnership with the Brookline Housing Authority, non-profit housing developers and creative use of town land and revenue streams. I have voted for resolutions for more town funds to help repair public housing in poor condition and have advocated for federal COVID American Rescue Plan relief funds be allocated for the preservation and creation of affordable housing for families and seniors.
Older Adult Services
Older Adults are 20% of Brookline's population, and they rely on the town for many essential services. The needs of older adults need to be centered in town planning.
We should fully fund the Senior Center and provide funds for needed senior-focused social services as we recover from COVID-19.
We should assist older adults who are struggling with food insecurity.
As we update our streets and sidewalks, we should ensure that the accessibility and mobility needs of older adults are taken into account. I support pedestrian infrastructure and lighting through the Town budget.
I was on the Kent-Station Street Senior Affordable Housing Committee that studied the feasibility of creating 50+ units of senior affordable housing in Brookline Village.
Climate & Sustainability
There are many steps we can take that can increase our sustainability and reduce our carbon footprint.
Install solar panels on town buildings, including our schools.
Electrify the town's vehicle fleet and increase the availability of EV charging stations around town.
Add incentives to the building permitting process to foster low-impact construction and renovation.
Support state legislation to allow the implementation of our fossil fuel restrictions.
Create policies to support walking, biking, and the use of public transportation.
I have voted for and actively supported Warrant Articles for fossil fuel free building code regulations for new construction, the installation of Electric Vehicle charging stations in Town, and the installation of heat pumps at the new Driscoll school.
Brookline is blessed to be a home for people from all over the world.
Walk down Brookline streets or visit to a playground and you're likely to hear two, three, or four languages spoken.
We need policies that welcome and support our immigrant neighbors, especially those who are low- and moderate-income or otherwise marginalized.
I voted for and actively supported the Warrant Article for Language Access which would provide language access services to residents that need it to be able to fully participate in various Town boards, commissions and meetings.
Excellent & Inclusive Schools
Brookline schools should live up to our aspirations and our children's dreams. I have supported and worked on every override for the schools to ensure that we have the budget to maintain reasonable class sizes and have the guidance counselors and nursing staff needed in the schools.
Every student — regardless of sexual orientation, gender, race, class, learning differences, disabilities — should feel safe, well taught, and respected. I am an active member of Pierce School FLARE (Families Leading to Advance Equity) and the district-wide equity group that both promote diversity, equity and inclusion in our schools.
Hiring, supporting, and retaining educators and administrators of color must be a priority.
We should empower our teachers' and students' creativity and move away from overly rigid curriculum mandates.
We should continue to support METCO.