Blue Line Extension
As a welcoming community, we should do everything we can to bring more people to our wonderful parks and businesses. Allowing the Blue Line Extension to move forward will increase ease of access to all that Robbinsdale has to offer—not just for Birdtowners, but for visitors from the greater metro area as well. Right now, there are proposed light rail stops at North Memorial and downtown Robbinsdale.
One of the best hospitals in the state is in Ward 4. Aaron, along with the rest of Robbinsdale, is proud of their healthcare workers and the help they provide to our surrounding communities. By decreasing transportation barriers to healthcare, we make it easier for everyone to receive the care they need. As the largest employer in the city, hospital employees and visitors would easily be able to take the light rail to downtown Robbinsdale to patronize our great businesses.
Unfortunately, the city council has itself become a barrier to the project’s completion. Aaron promises to follow the leadership and expertise of the Metropolitan Council and to work with, not against, them.
Robbinsdale Historical Society - Creative Commons License
Aaron is acutely aware of the challenges that working people face every day. Cost of living is rising and wages are not. Federal and State leaders have failed to properly address this issue, so it is up to us to fight for the dignity of all workers in our city. Providing a higher standard of living to all people that make Birdtown great is a top priority. Some of the things he would like to implement include:
$15 Minimum Wage - Minneapolis is set to phase in their $15 minimum wage for large employers on July 1, 2022. We need to recognize the hard work that goes into making our local businesses the best around by compensating their employees accordingly. Aaron will fight to pass a similar ordinance.
Raising the pay of all city employees to at least $15/hour is something the City Council can do at any time and will be one of the first things Aaron does if elected.
Sick Time - It is clear that employees must be given paid sick leave. To keep other employees and customers safe, workers should be able to stay home without losing pay if they fall ill. Aaron will introduce an ordinance requiring all Robbinsdale employers to do just that.
Fair Scheduling - Working folks have lives outside of their jobs. It isn't fair when an employer changes their work schedule at the last minute. Aaron looks forward to implementing an ordinance requiring businesses to set - and stick to - a 2-week schedule.
If elected, Aaron will always prioritize union labor for city projects.
One of the first political campaigns Aaron ever volunteered for was the one to help defeat the hateful, anti-gay marriage amendment back in 2012. LGBTQIA2S+ rights have always been important to him. Not only because he has loved ones in that community, but because he believes in equality for all people regardless of who they love or how they identify.
Aaron understands that there is still a lot of work to be done to end the economic and social discrimination LGBTQIA2S+ people face every day. He will work with community leaders and the Robbinsdale Human Rights Commission to come up with policies to ensure all Birdtowners feel welcomed and safe.
With the entire planet in the midst of a climate crisis, it can seem difficult for a city of our size to make meaningful difference. Aaron believes that we can. Public transit infrastructure, like the Blue Line Extension, will help reduce emissions from less efficient transportation. We should also encourage other forms of green transportation, so expanding and protecting cycling infrastructure is another important area he will focus on.
Aaron also feels that the city hasn’t done enough to explore green energy incentives for businesses and residents. He will work with experts and community leaders to bring forth new ideas to reduce Robbinsdale’s carbon footprint.
Healthcare and Reproductive Rights
City of Robbinsdale
There is no one solution to address crime, policing, rehabilitation, and prevention. As a city, we must take a multipronged approach that genuinely serves our neighbors and keeps everyone safe. Exploring solutions that center a public health approach to community safety is a top priority for Aaron. Historically, our country’s approach to criminal justice has been reactive (i.e. it can only respond to crimes in progress or investigate ones that have already happened). While that need will always exist, we should start thinking proactively and focus on prevention. Aaron will work with community leaders to come up with a holistic, people-first approach to these difficult questions.
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Cost of living is on the rise throughout Minnesota. This disproportionately affects working people, who are also the majority of renters. Allowing landlords to arbitrarily increase rents as much as they want puts an incredible burden on families who struggle to make ends meet as-is. While Aaron would like to see protections against such rent increases introduced immediately, Minnesota law requires that voters approve any rent stabilization measures through a ballot initiative. Aaron will use his position on the council to build support for a ballot question that caps rent increases to a reasonable amount.
Led by the People
Robbinsdale is a changing city. While it still maintains some of its "small town" charm, it can no longer be considered separate from the greater Twin Cities area. Birdtown is an eclectic, diverse, and inclusive metropolitan hub for everyone in the surrounding area to enjoy. Unfortunately, local government can be slow to recognize these cultural changes. One of Aaron's goals is to increase community engagement so our city better reflects the people who live and work here.
Elected officials should accurately represent the interests, desires, and needs of their constituents. Currently, some residents in Ward 4 feel that the current Council does not. Aaron would like to remedy that disconnect. If elected to City Council, he will remain accessible and responsive to his neighbors and vows to value all feedback, positive and negative. He believes that the city belongs to its residents, and each one should have a say in how it is governed.