“We protest against segregated districts, separate public coveyances, industrial discrimination, lynchings and limitations of political privileges of any Negro citizen in any part of the world on account of race color or creed, and will exert our full influence and power against all such.”
-UNIA Black Bill of Rights, Declaration #10The UNIA-ACL , 433 Buffalo Division will release its “Candidate’s Report Card” in time for the upcoming election.
The grading is based on how well the politician or candidate has done for and in Buffalo’s Black community. This process has been a collective initiative among community leaders as well as through polling of Buffalo’s Black citizens.
Voting history is the main criteria for sitting politicians. Potential candidates may have had a history of lobbying for or against certain benefits in Buffalo’s Black community.
Preliminary grading shows high marks for April Baskin and Howard Johnson for their work with jail reform. However, Common Council members find themselves in the lower percentiles. Voting to approve the recent raise in housing taxes while at the same time receiving raises themselves has diminished their scores.
Many activists are running to replace sitting politicians and obviously touting change for the better on issues like Brownfield/Environmental Clean Ups, Gentrification and Police Conduct. Inexperience has limited the otherwise high marks of Write-In candidates like Tyshone Peete, Antionette Craig, Nate Boyd and Taniqua Simmons who do community work but simply haven’t been in an elected official position to vote on issues. However, this does not take away from their potential or overall grade.
The goal of this initiative is to show current and aspiring politicians that the time for mere complaints and requests is over. Buffalo’s Black community is watching, learning and will hold accountable all that operate in our community.
Full report cards to be released before polls open on the 26th at lionblyden.wixsite.com/website