Activist Erika Almirón Runs For Philadelphia City Council
Could we be in the midst of witnessing another Latinx woman and political outsider take center stage in the democratic party? Many of us were surprised, yet thrilled by the meteoric rise of Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, who defeated 10-time incumbent, Joe Crowley as the U.S. Representative for New York’s 14th congressional district. Well, perhaps it’s time we become well acquainted with Erika Almirón, a longtime social justice activist who is running for an at-large seat on Philadelphia City Council.
Almirón is a self-described “philly girl” who was born to immigrant parents from Paraguay. For the past 7 years, she has been the executive director of Juntos, a community-led, Latinx immigrant organization in South Philadelphia that mobilizes communities to be the agents of change against their own oppression.
Almirón hopes to fight for justice for immigrants, people of color and underrepresented communities. “I have direct experience working with everyone from immigrant laborers to district attorneys to pastors to parents. I lost a friend in high school to a police shooting, and watched a close relative die in prison. On a very personal note, I didn’t report my rape years ago. As a survivor, I know intimately how women of color are treated when they report their assaults and are many times not believed. These intimate experiences make me stand out because they are both my personal experiences and they motivate me and ground my ability to fight for justice and win,” said Almirón during a recent interview with Philadephia Magazine.
On the policy front, Almirón is critically outspoken against Philadelphia Major, Jim Kenney’s referral to the city as a sanctuary city, “We have the most aggressive ICE office in the country, who round up people for deportations. In order to be a true sanctuary city we must push back against institutions like ICE.”
She also believes in the importance of fighting against the expansion of charter schools, who she has stated weakens the city’s public schools. Almirón want to establish housing policies to help the city’s long-term residents fight against gentrification and she aims to seriously address over-policing in Philadelphia. “We currently spend a third of our city budget on public safety and spend too much of our resources on broken-window policing and incarceration,” said Almirón during the same Philadelphia magazine interview.
To learn more about Erika Almirón’s policies and her hopes for the city of Philadelphia, check out her campaign page.