This Saturday, August 6th, is the tenth anniversary of the Chevron Refinery Explosion.

I’m sure many of you remember that day, when huge clouds of black smoke covered the Richmond sky, and warning sirens rang through our neighborhoods. As a result, 15,000 members of our community had to go to the hospital for breathing issues.

It's not the only time I saw Richmond residents struggle to breathe. Before I was a City Councilmember, I was a public elementary school teacher in Richmond for nearly two decades. During that time, I noticed that many of my students could not participate in physical education. Because Richmond students had grown up with so many environmental pollutants, they had much higher rates of asthma and other breathing problems than students in other districts. 

As a teacher, I addressed this problem by making a special physical education class for students who had difficulty breathing— we called ourselves The Asthma Club. When that didn’t feel like enough to address this problem, I ran for public office.

As your City Council member, I have spent the past eight years with my Asthma Club students in mind, fighting to improve Richmond's environmental conditions. I am proud to say that in my time on City Council:

  • I have worked with Richmond residents to ban coal transport in our city
  • I have consistently pushed for Chevron to curb its toxic emissions
  • I have stood on the picket line with Richmond’s Chevron workers as they demanded a safer refinery
  • I have voted for a full clean up of the polluted AstraZeneca site on Richmond’s shoreline

As mayor, I will continue to protect Richmond’s air, water, and land. I am the only mayoral candidate that has pledged to take no corporate donations -- I take nothing from Chevron or any other big businesses. I stand up for you and your family, not the huge corporations that value their profit more than your health.

Richmond’s children deserve clean air. Join me as we make Richmond a great city for working families.