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Quarterly Newsletter October-December 2021

Dear community members and friends

Winter is near and with that comes hibernation and reflection. 

In Persian culture, and in my family, we celebrate the Winter Solstice-Shab-e-Yalda, which means ‘night of birth’. On this longest night of the year, friends and family gather and ‘battle the dark’ by sharing food, reading Hafez poetry, playing music, and reflecting on the past and sharing hopes for the coming year. 

I have been reflecting on my year on council. I’m proud of my contributions towards housing, services for the unhoused, committing to creating safe and inclusive communities, and prioritizing youth. I also recognize that there remains much work ahead of us. I’m committed to listening, partnering, and continuing to roll up my sleeves to serve our community. Happy Holidays to you and your families.

Shebreh

How did the rose ever open its heart and give to this world all of its beauty? It felt the encouragement of Light against its being... ~ Hafez

District 3 County Supervisor Campaign Update

I’ve been enjoying meeting a diverse range of District 3 community members over the last several months. Housing, fire recovery and climate action, economic recovery and workforce development, mental health and substance abuse-these  are some of the topics that community members have discussed with me and that I am committed to working on.

I have been continuing to receive strong endorsements, creating a dedicated campaign team, and experiencing the generosity of our community members through their time and contributions.

I have an ask for you  – if you have not done so already, please help me meet my end of the calendar year fundraising goal by donating to my campaign today. Whatever you can afford will make a big difference.

Your contributions will help me roll out a strong campaign as things pick up this Winter and Spring as we prepare for the June primaries.

You may donate on my website: shebreh.org or by mailing a check to: 849 Almar Avenue Suite C #432 Santa Cruz CA 95060

Thank you for all of your support!

 

City Updates

Children & Youth Bill of Rights--coming on Tuesday December 14th!

Children and youth well-being is a topic that we can all get behind right? 

Each of us have some relationship with children-we have our own, we have grandchildren, we are aunts and uncles, we are caretakers. Yet repeatedly, we as adults, as organizations, as government, fail to prioritize youth in our decisions and actions. 

In the recently released Surgeon General’s Protecting Youth Mental Health Report , Dr Murthy states: “This is the moment to demand change—with our voices and with our actions. Only when we do will we be able to protect, strengthen, and support the health and safety of all children, adolescents, and young adults—and ensure everyone has a platform to thrive.”

We are responding to this call to action. Over the last several months, I have been working with councilmembers Martine Watkins and Renee Golder, City Parks and Recreation staff, and the United Way of Santa Cruz County’s Youth Action Network to bring forward the City of Santa Cruz Children and Youth Bill of Rights. Aligned with similar efforts at the State and across the State, the City of Santa Cruz Children and Youth Bill of Rights will ensure that leaders keep the needs of young people at the forefront of decisions about budgets and government policies. 


The Bill of Rights will be presented to the full council on Tuesday 12/14/21 (estimated time between 3-4pm). Please consider writing a letter of support (citycouncil@cityofsantacruz.com) and/or making a public comment during the public comment portion of this agenda. To learn more, please review the agenda packet (item 27).

United Against Hate-Safe & Inclusive Communities Resolution

In November, Mayor Donna Meyers, Vice Mayor Sonja Brunner and I brought forth a resolution recognizing the historical and current existence of racism and white supremacy in the community and endorsing action steps to work towards a safe and inclusive Santa Cruz. The resolution was co-created with members of our community who identify as People of Color, including Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Asian American, and Pacific Islander. Some of the action items the City committed to through the resolution include (but are not limited to): 

  • Analysis of data identifying white supremacy and hate crimes in the City of Santa Cruz. 

  • Analysis and potential development of new public safety protocols ensuring the safety of all People of Color. 

  • Authentic community engagement with communities of color prior to making decisions. 

  • Support resources for racial equity processes and outcomes including to leaders of color serving communities of color.

  • Developing a pipeline of People of Color in civic leadership positions.

  • Ongoing diversity equity and inclusion efforts to recruit and retain a workforce broadly reflective of the community.

By unanimously passing this resolution, the Santa Cruz City Council demonstrated its commitment to creating a city-wide climate that reflects an anti-racist, anti-discriminatory, and mutually respectful community.

Oversized Vehicle Ordinance and Safe Parking
The City of Santa Cruz has been experiencing an increasing number of oversized vehicles parking for long periods of time on city streets, impacting public safety, health, and the environment for those who are housed and unhoused.

Over the last six plus months, I have worked with Vice Mayor Sonja Brunner and councilmember Renee Golder as well as various community groups, neighbors, businesses and service providers to address the challenges our community has been facing.  

The result was an oversized vehicle ordinance whose purpose was to:

  1. Provide parameters on time, place, and manner of parking of oversized vehicles on city streets in order to address environmental and public health impacts. 

  2. Implement a three-tiered safe parking framework to provide places for individuals living in their vehicles to park that are safe, accessible and do not negatively impact existing neighborhoods.

The specific subpopulations prioritized include: Families with children; seniors, transition age youth; veterans; and those with a valid disabled placard or license plate.

The ordinance passed in early November and since then City staff have made significant progress on the safe parking program. You can learn more on the City’s Homeless Response page

I will continue to work with City staff, service providers, county partners and interested community groups to ensure effective implementation of the program.

Santa Cruz Libraries Capital Campaign--help get us to the finish line!

Many of us here in Santa Cruz enjoy our libraries. I frequented our downtown library at least once a week when my boys were little. We spent many mornings and afternoons participating in read-alongs, browsing the shelves, and diving into books together. Having access to free books was also a godsend to our family during the pandemic. I love and value our public libraries and I think many of you do too! 

This is why I am reaching out to ask you to please join me in supporting the Realizing the Promise Campaign of the Friends of the Santa Cruz Public Libraries. This campaign will supplement Measure S funds and support capital rebuilding and renovations in the Aptos, Branciforte, and Garfield Park library branches. To read about the campaign, visit the Friends website Realizing the Promise page.

We are now at 97% of our goal! Will you join me and help us make it to the finish line?

To donate to Capital Campaign where needed most online, please visit: 
https://fscpl.org/capitalcampaign-donate/ and select Capital Campaign where needed most! Make checks payable to Friends of the Santa Cruz Public Libraries and send them to PO Box 8472, Santa Cruz, CA 95061

Donors who make gifts over $1,000 will have their names listed on a donor recognition wall at the Aptos. Branciforte, or Garfield Park branch; if you would like to make a multi-year pledge, please contact Operations Manager Rebekah Scott rebekah@fscpl.org, 831-427-7716.

Council Meetings

You can access city council meetings from the last quarter (September-November) below. Dates of upcoming council meetings are also provided. 

Links to Past Council Meetings 

  • October 12, 2021 LINK

  • October 26, 2021 LINK

  • November 9, 2021 LINK

  • November 23, 2021 LINK

  • November 30, 2021 (Special Council Meeting) LINK
     

Dates of Upcoming Council Meetings:

  • December 14, 2021 LINK

  • January 11, 2022

  • January 25, 2022

  • February 8, 2022

  • February 22, 2022

  • March 8, 2022

  • March 22, 2022

To access packets and links for live stream council meetings, please visit: City of Santa Cruz website

 

Please follow me on my instagram and facebook pages if you would like more regular updates. 

If you have thoughts, ideas, questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at:  skalantari-johnson@cityofsantacruz.com for city council related topics and at: shebreh4santacruz@gmail.com for any other topics. 

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“Women belong in all places where decisions are being made” ~Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Copyright © *|2021|* *|ShebrehCityCouncil|*, All rights reserved.
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Shebreh Kalantari-Johnson for Santa Cruz City Council Candidate 2020 · 849 Almar Avenue Suite C number 489 · Santa Cruz, California 95060 · USA

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