Promoting the rights, opportunities and safety of everyone who lives here – these are Democratic values and what Supervisor Carson works for every day. Keith is proud to have the endorsement of Democrats across Alameda County who share his values and who are devoted to working for everyone. These endorsements include: Alameda County Democratic Party, Asian Pacific American Democratic Caucus of Alameda County, Berkeley Democratic Club, East Bay Stonewall Democratic Club, East Bay Young Democrats, Niagara Democratic Movement and Wellstone Democratic Renewal Club.Read more
Alameda County is a beautiful place – from our waterfront to our hills and everywhere in between. That’s why Supervisor Carson is so proud to have the endorsement of the Sierra Club in his bid for re-election to the Board of Supervisors.Read more
Supervisor Carson is committed to making sure Alameda County has an economy that works for everyone. He started Vision 2026 to create a strategy to do just that, saying “Through Vision 2026, Alameda County commits itself to a series of bold new steps to foster vibrant communities where all residents have access to housing, healthcare, jobs and opportunities to achieve happiness and fulfillment.”Read more
San Francisco Chronicle SF Homeless Project
By Keith Carson and Muntu Davis
We all know that home is where the heart is. But it’s also where our health starts. When we stabilize the rising costs of housing for renters and homeowners in the Bay Area through protecting communities, preserving and producing more housing, we will improve the health of our region.
One-third of our Bay Area families with young children struggle to pay for their housing, and nearly 5,000 parents, children and caregivers were homeless in 2017, according to analysis by the Bay Area Regional Health Inequities Initiative. This situation is compounding health risks, and undermining the ability of our region to keep people healthy.
When we don’t have access to quality, affordable homes, our health suffers and we compromise the vibrancy of our Bay Area region. Patients cut pills in half to make them go further. People take on extra jobs and spend less time with family, friends, exercising and sleeping. The stress of stretching every penny increases mental and physical health problems, which is reflected in higher rates of hypertension, depression and suicide.
As a result of policies such as segregation and economic disinvestment, low-income residents continue to be at greater risk of enduring dilapidated homes and displacement from their communities. Displacement has a significant effect on quality of life. Displacement isn’t just losing your home, it’s losing your social network and support system. Ultimately, the impact of displacement and housing instability are primary drivers of poor health outcomes that are concentrated by race and neighborhood — inequities amounting to life expectancy differences of up to 25 years between the richest and poorest neighborhoods in the Bay Area.
Every sector of our region must become part of the conversation and part of the solution. For instance, the Alameda County Health Department co-chairs the regional coalition of health departments, which is working with peer public health departments to identify and support regional housing solutions. In this crucial time for our Bay Area community, we can come together to make equitable and more effective policies and partnerships to protect all residents and create housing for all.
A little known but promising opportunity for leadership on housing is the Committee to House the Bay Area (CASA). This regional table is made up of city and county elected officials, business and tech leaders, housing builders, union representatives and, most important, leaders representing the residents who are directly impacted by the housing shortage crisis.
The members of CASA are working to develop a set of integrated legislative, financial, policy and regulatory recommendations that will be used to create a regional plan to keep people in their homes, ensure homes are safe and build much-needed housing.
CASA members are actively prioritizing issues such as displacement and housing needs to ensure that the regional housing plan works for everyone in the region, especially our most disenfranchised communities. The first step of a successful CASA process is to ensure that residents can stay in their neighborhoods — in homes free of lead, asthma triggers and other conditions that hurt families’ health.
CASA calls this the “three P’s approach:” protection of our residents, preservation of existing housing and production of new affordable housing. Such an approach will put us on track for a healthy region.
The Bay Area is special: People make their home here because our streets are full of art, culture, food and ideas from every corner of the globe, and we celebrate that diversity.
Preventing displacement and addressing the housing crisis may be the most important task in our collective efforts to maintain our unique character and create healthy communities for all. The same communities that have put us on the map as a region also have been hit hardest by historical and current policies. Our communities of color and low-income communities are being squeezed out. We are taking action on housing to improve health and well-being, and we’re asking everyone to join us.
Thousands of low-income Alameda County families will no longer pay juvenile probation and public defender fees.
On July 12, the Alameda County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to end the assessment and collection on all fees charged to parents and guardians with children in the juvenile justice system. The repeal, which is the first of its kind in the state, ends all fee assessment and collection, offering immediate relief to more than 2,900 families with outstanding debt and shielding thousands of families who pass through Alameda’s juvenile courts every year from future financial hardship.
The repeal is the result of efforts lead by the U.C. Berkeley School of Law Policy Advocacy Clinic and the East Bay Community Law Center, in collaboration with key county departments (including the Probation Department, the Central Collections Agency and the Public Defender’s Office) and on behalf of several community partners, including the East Bay Children’s Law Office, the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California and the Prison Law Office.
Alameda County Supervisor Keith Carson spoke recently to a group of kindergarteners and parent champions at the “It’s Up to All of Us” Campaign Kick-off in honor of Zachary Cruz Pedestrian Safety Month, which took place at the Berkeley Arts Magnet Elementary School.
“Life in Berkeley has changed,” Supervisor Carson told the class. “There are more walkers and bikers than ever. We need to share the road and share the responsibility.”
Recent data shows that every hour a pedestrian is injured or killed in California. According to the Office of Traffic Safety, Berkeley has the highest number of pedestrian collisions in the state for cities of its size.