Baltimore has been a destination city for generations of people seeking opportunity and community – in pursuit of a good job and a safe place to raise their family where everyone is treated fairly and hope for the future abounds regardless of race, creed or zip code. These are basic promises that we must recommit to until they are guaranteed for every person who calls Baltimore home. We face incredible challenges that must be acknowledged and addressed to make our communities more connected, more equitable, more sustainable and safer. I know that together, this resilient city filled with incredible people who meet those challenges every day can and will continue to rise to the challenge.
We must do more to address the systemic inequities and injustices that have created two Baltimores: the haves and the have nots. We must provide a high-quality education for every child, ensure housing and food security for low-income residents, reform our broken criminal justice system and make certain that every resident has access to quality, affordable healthcare. This starts with improving education outcomes across our public schools.
Baltimore communities face a unique set of challenges that are complex and intersectional. To address these challenges — like crime, poverty, access to education, affordable housing, and transportation –, we need an equally unique, collaborative, cross-sectional, and evidence-based approach.
We need to double down on data-driven methods that reduce violent crime in our city. We also need to ensure that our police officers are trained in de-escalation, conflict prevention and focus on building trust and respect with all communities.