Odette is a Democrat running for Baltimore City Council in the 14th District. Odette's campaign is a movement to put Neighborhoods and People First, world class schools, innovation, and good government.
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From errors in water bills and increasing water rates, to basic services, Baltimore needs better management and customer service. We need to look at new models for water billing, which is a problem for every Baltimore resident. There are models in our state we can look to. Families deserve accurate water bills to avoid paying more than needed, and help avoid shut offs. Odette has experience as an organizational leader who knows how to manage people and budgets. She also is a creative thinker and will use her experience working in community development statewide to review models in other cities and counties for ways we can do better. Her experience and tenacity to solve problems will help make Baltimore work for our residents.
Children are unable to learn if they are walking to school afraid to be shot, or in neighborhoods where it seems no one cares because the homes are vacant and falling apart. In looking at crime statistics, more violent crime happens in areas where there are more vacant properties. Baltimore is in desperate need of additional affordable housing. As a community development advocate, Odette has been working tirelessly to pass legislation providing more tools for Baltimore City and other counties to address blighted properties. She will advocate strongly for targeted use of these tools in areas that need it most, and for redevelopment without displacement in those areas. Odette's clear that Commissioner Michael Harrison must be supported in whatever he needs to address violent crime, while we work to provide opportunities to families, women and young people to prevent it.
Women are still earning, on average, 81% of what men are earning. Sexual harassment is something that still happens in our workplaces. Odette has worked to raise wages and end harassment and will use her platform as a City Council member to continue to fight. She knows that reporting of harassment and other injustices goes unaddressed, and she will make sure women are heard. Affordable health care, mental health care, and child care are critical to family stability and women’s success. While these are issues that are generally addressed at the statewide level, Odette’s partnerships in this area can help connect families with such critical services.
As a parent of a child in Baltimore’s public school system, Odette knows the challenges facing our public schools. According to the Kirwan Commission, 75% of our schools in Baltimore are underfunded. This means they lack the resources to help children learn. Children come to school with various needs, and schools must have the services to help them grow and learn. It’s time to make sure that funding is available, and that our schools, principals, and teachers are held to high standard. Lower class sizes, increased teacher pay, and upgraded facilities are keys to success. Universal Pre-k must be implemented in all schools. City Council can advocate for these resources, and make sure that Baltimore is doing its share in investing in our schools. Odette continues to talk with professionals in the field, and parents, to understand the best way forward.
Baltimore needs reform of ethics laws and campaign finance laws to ensure that our elected leaders serve people, not themselves. The City Council must make decisions based on analysis of data about the impact of legislation on our communities, rather than who gives more to specific campaigns or which groups are the loudest. Reforming our procurement laws is also important to avoid potential and obvious conflicts of interest. Odette’s advocacy in Annapolis and around the state has given her the opportunity to learn more about how other cities, towns, and states operate so that we can learn from these models.
Local businesses, owned and operated by women and people of color, continue to thrive in Baltimore, yet are not given the same resources, tax credits and subsidies that big businesses get. Fostering local entrepreneurs must be a top priority to help with Baltimore’s jobs crisis. Small businesses, often run by women and people of color, take risks, locate in areas where they are needed, hire from communities, and hire returning citizens. Baltimore’s procurement system must be reformed to ensure women and minority contractors have the same opportunities for investment in our city. Odette was a small business owner for over 10 years, and served as chair of the Baltimore Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. She understands these issues and will fight to engage and enhance small businesses owned by women and people of color.
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Copyright © 2019 - Friends of Odette Ramos - All Rights Reserved
Odette Ramos, Democrat for 14th District Baltimore City Council
By Authority Friends of Odette Ramos, Erika McClammy, Treasurer
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