“My name is Aaron Dowker and I’m running for mayor.”
This is my opening line when I travel the airpark and Fifth Street, the college and Crown Isle asking people their thoughts and concerns, hoping for solutions as we need all we can get.
I met an air traffic controller that enlightened me on chokepoints and the effectiveness of one-way streets. I also met an alcoholic that had been clean for eight months in a treatment center before relapsing while staying at the Travelodge. “How was I gonna last in there?” he asked me.
I met Jin Lin and toured the homemade slapped together harmony of a community that is Maple Pool and the safety it brings to so many under her watch. And I reflected that without community, drug users don’t have enough reason to stay clean.
I talked to Doug and Lynn, retired, and who have money for property if only they were allowed to park their fifth wheel there, and I heard from people that were unhappy with 17th and 5th Street. People that want bike lanes but not next to car paths.
I heard a lot of young people comment “I wish the bus system was better” and met a courageous young person attending college after living on the streets and hitting rock bottom. I also met a single mom who had recovered from heroin to raise a family, only to pay $2,100 a month for her apartment.
It broke my heart.
So what to do about this? That’s the question everybody’s asking. And although the solutions are hard to find, by talking to people, (and once in office through collaborative, grassroots action) we are finding them.
Please consider voting on election day. It is the first step in getting heard. I have had the privilege for the last few weeks to consider your concerns and I’ve marvelled at the solutions we have come up with.
To contact me, email Aarondowkerformayor@gmail.com, or call 250-703-6957.