Our Vision

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PUBLIC SAFETY

The neighborhoods in our city have suffered under the perils of crime for decades.  I am committed to making our neighborhoods better places to live, work, and play by implementing policies that work and enacting those best practices used throughout our country with proven effectiveness. 

We have taken a comprehensive approach to the issue of public safety by not only treating the symptoms, but the causes of crime.  What we must begin to recognize is, the condition of the environment in which we live is directly related.  Poverty, unemployment and the quality of education is a direct cause of not only crime but the types of crime we witness.   

We intend to lower the rate of crime in our city by attacking it, with the people of our community as the focus.

Prevention:  We must, as an entire community, improve how we identify those most at-risk of committing crimes and implement multi-level intervention.  1) Understanding as leadership we will demand improvement of the public and adult Education systems, as this is the most efficient anti-crime action, along with school-based programs for at-risk youth; and 2) Recognizing that Newark’s Unemployment Rate of 8.2% is nearly double the State (5%) and National (4.1%) average and this tragedy is in direct correlation to the increase of crime in our community, getting our residents back to work will be the top priority.

Engagement:  We must create an authentic relationship between local government, law enforcement, and residents in our neighborhoods.  We will influence an active partnership in public safety via giving leaders in our community a legitimate seat at the table and allowing those leaders to help design and implement policies, per ward, which will promote greater trust and investment in safer neighborhoods.

Enforcement:  While Prevention and Engagement are paramount tools in ensuring public safety, it is our responsibility to prosecute those who commit reckless and life threatening crimes.  Working with prosecutors and police, we will send the unmitigated message that if you commit a crime in our city and/or carry illegal weapons, you will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

EDUCATION

Gayle Chaneyfield Jenkins is a true product of the city of Newark, educated here, she has throughout her life of public service, championed the cause for every student to receive an equal and quality education.

As a leader, and initially at the shunning of colleagues, in 2015, she first stood for the unification and against a citywide cantankerous divide between traditional and charter public school communities. Throughout her career focusing on the importance of both the educational and social services necessary for the full healthy development of each and every child throughout the city, Gayle has stood with the community!  Traveling with students to Washington, teaming up with the Newark Fire Department to provide custom coats to our youngest babies during the winter seasons or fighting alongside parents for a more accountable system, she will continue to stand!

Our public schools in Newark have received the penalty of poverty for far too long.  The education afforded to the children in the State of New Jersey per our Constitution states, that “equal educational opportunity for children” is the demand and a “system of instruction in any district of the State which is not thorough and efficient fall short of the constitutional command.”  Yet in our city, it appears more attractive to give million-dollar tax abatements to developers than to ensure our children receive the greatest education feasible.

With the great ushering in of our newly elected Governor Phil Murphy and the beginning stages of the transition to Local Control in our city, we have the opportunity of creating a historical shift and change the course for our greatest asset – the children, we groom with a world-class education.  Our children must be provided with a system that prepares every student for this 21st-century workforce.

Gayle Chaneyfield Jenkins intends to see our children move forward through:

  1. Ensuring that the Constitutional Right for an Equal and Quality Education is upheld throughout our city, by promoting for the sharing of best practices of the highest performing schools, which will ensure the health and development of all public schools.
  2. More accountability on the local school board to ensure the full funding formula per the Supreme Court is returned and those funds reach the classroom first.
  3. Supporting true engagement of the local community of parents, and providing them with a greater voice in the process of how their children are educated and how funding is disseminated for their children’s education.
  4. Restoring a healthy teacher, union, administration, and state relationship, in order to create an environment wherein we are able to hear what support our teachers are lacking in our public school system.
  5. Promoting for additional funding to extend successful STEM curriculum throughout all grade levels.
  6. Increasing access to local community and state colleges for high school students, as well as offering viable vocational programs to students who choose an alternative road to success.

JOBS & WORKFORCE DEVELOPMENT

Newark’s next Mayor has the emergent tasks of expanding job opportunities and improving workforce development.  In a city witnessing an unemployment rate of 8.2%; nearly double the State (5%) and National (4.1%) average, there is major work to be done.  Very often, we attempt to reinvent the wheel; however, research has shown best practices used on the national level, have proven fruitful to struggling urban cities across the country. 

My vision is to see our community back to work.  Through relationships with surrounding businesses and stakeholders, we can finally “move forward” and not use the phrase as just a tagline.  We must understand that our residents are not benefiting from the high tide, of big buildings and massive companies.  An unemployment rate of 8.2% translates into over 24,000 Newark residents presently out of work.  Families struggling in a city where big businesses have taken residency, says we are not capitalizing for the purpose of moving our community forward.

The plan must be tangible and realistic.  Therefore, I have adopted a vision, with immediate and long-term goals of putting our community back to work and improving workforce development:

  1. Bring Jobs to the People:  Implementing local policy will spark Job Creation via targeted employer tax breaks and public service will promote hiring and better access to jobs.
  2. Work, Grow & Reduce:  Working with long-term employers within the city, who have been forced to continuously lay-off employees who reside in our community, adopts an agreement for work share arrangements.  This agreement would have employers reduce the city employee’s work hours, rather than layoff.  This allows the employee to retain health and retirement benefits for their families and although receiving a reduced pay, understanding unemployment benefits are much less.
  3. Fix, Spread & Reward:  Reorganizing the system of paving and repairing roads within our city for the preservation, maintenance, and enhancement of our roads and creation of the “road bank” to meet our goals.  This will not only promote employment in the short term, but also encourage better transportation infrastructure on our local roads to reduce commuter times and make it easier to get to our jobs.
  4. Fostering entrepreneurship among minorities and women through programs.
  5. Expanding Apprenticeship Opportunities:  Expanding access to registered apprenticeship programs, targeting at risk youth and middle-skilled adults in low wage jobs.
  6. Improving Employment Outcomes for Disadvantaged Students:  Creating incentives for community colleges and local state universities to provide classes in better-waged fields and for employers to offer more training, will generate better labor market outcomes and wage gains.

Affordable Housing

Real Newarkers are being priced out of the city.  Affordable Housing is swiftly becoming a thing of the past and families are finding themselves with no options.  Those fortunate enough to own homes have seen their property taxes increased consistently for four years and families are being locked out of our city.

I intend to create more options for our families.  What is being touted as positive development growth in our city, has displaced families through enormous rent increases.  As the population of our city grows, so will the problem.  The options we create, must include low-income families, as well as the middle class we seem to have abandoned.

I will create the Newark Affordable Housing Agenda (NAHA), which will serve as a blueprint for an additional 20,000 – 30,000 low-income housing units over the next ten (10) years; through developing partnerships at the state, regional and local level, which will be crucial to our success.  Targeting for profit and non-profit developers, social justice organizations, and labor will result in short-term action and long-term success.

The NAHA will first abolish the City Ordinance recently passed – a document that is adversarial to our residents.  We will return preference to Newark residents and abolish any deadlines penalizing the renter.

The NAHA will continue to promote and engage developers who respect that they are investing in a city that invest in its people.  We need to understand the impact of any proposal to build on Newark land, by listening to our communities and neighborhoods and respect the robust input and engagement it takes to fix this complex issue

Community Policing

Research has proved that authentic Community Policing has shown the greatest success in decreasing crime in Urban America.  When a police force functions as partners in the neighborhood it is assigned to maintain order with and safety for, formulating legitimate relationships with the community, businesses, and clergy, has been key and the success overwhelming.  With swift and accurate planning, we intend to reorganize the patrol plan, with the goal of active community policing in each precinct throughout the city by the year 2020.

Each precinct will be divided into three or four staffed segments, with officers strategically assigned to permanent posts within the community.  These officers will take responsibility for their respective areas, which increases familiarity with neighbors, business owners, and clergy.  The idea of having officers take ownership of their area affords a feeling of belonging on both sides – community and law enforcement. 

Patrol along with Coordination Officers, provide a full range of services, including a blackout period from radio service, assigning a time dedicated specifically to community engagement.  Coordination Officers will have the responsibility of attending community meetings in an effort to understand the residents, as well as the problems.  This practice guarantees our officers the opportunity to recognize dangers and take the necessary action for prevention.