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Dayton Commission candidates on supporting minority constituents

By Zack Frink

Dayton Commission candidates are weighing in on how they will support minority constituents. Elevate Dayton reached out to all commission candidates running in the Nov. 5 elections with one question: What policies or programs do you support that benefit women, minority and LGBTQ+ constituents? The responses received by Elevate Dayton are below.

David Esrati: I'm a dem. I'm strongly in favor of inclusivity and equality. I have no specific policies or positions other than I think we're all screwed thanks to Trump's supreme court appointments- and if we don't vote overwhelmingly blue in 2020- I'm afraid for our country. I believe the constitution said "all men were created equal" and other than saying "Men" instead of "people" it's still the standard.

Matt Joseph: I have a long record of protecting and supporting women, minority and LGBTQ+ Daytonians. My colleagues and I passed Dayton’s ordinance to prohibit discrimination against LGBTQ+ individuals, and we have been given perfect or nearly-perfect scores by the Human Rights Campaign’s Municipal Equality Index for the last few years.

I am a strong supporter of the city’s Living Wage Ordinance and I advocated for the city’s paid maternal/paternal leave policy we passed a few years ago, which grants that leave to all city employees. I enthusiastically support the city’s PEP program, which grants preference to minority and women-owned businesses in bidding for city contracts. I will continue to support efforts to increase the number of minority and women entrepreneurs doing business with the city. I will continue my support of efforts to increase hiring of Dayton citizens, and especially union workers, on all projects that the city helps fund.

To lift up underserved groups in our community, we must give the next generation of our children the educational opportunities they need to succeed, and that starts with Pre-K. I’m proud to have championed the issue that brought affordable, high-quality Pre-K to all Dayton four-year-olds. The Preschool Promise offers financial assistance to families in need.

Finally, I am the Board Chair for Welcome Dayton, and I work to support and better integrate the refugees and immigrants in our community, many of who arrive here with almost nothing.

Looking to the future: as Dayton’s recovery continues, I strongly support making sure the benefits reach every neighborhood of our city, particularly minority communities, so that all neighborhoods benefit.

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