As the campaign for CD10 heats up, young civic leaders and committed community activists are throwing their support behind the most seasoned, experienced (and oldest!) leader among the candidates.
While MRT’s experience and record of results are often cited as reasons for their support, even more important to young people has been his leadership and support on issues that matter to them.
For example, his longtime support for equality and LGBTQ rights, coming decades before equality was politically popular in Los Angeles, has earned him the strong support of the Stonewall Young Democrats.
Even with regard to issues that affect the entire city, such as homelessness, MRT is sensitive to the nuances of a complex problem. Non-gender conforming youth have the highest rates of homelessness of all young people, and addressing homelessness means developing the cultural competency necessary to face down the inequality and discrimination that pushes young people onto the streets.
In announcing support for MRT, Stonewall tweeted: “We are pleased to endorse our longtime friend @MRTempower for LA City Council District 10. We need more elected officials who are committed to empowering traditionally disenfranchised communities.”
Los Angeles County Young Democrats, which has more than 1,000 members, is also backing MRT.
After he received the group’s endorsement, LACYD President Marco Sanchez and Vice President of Administration, Stephanie Uy, hosted MRT’s recent campaign kick-off at his headquarters on Crenshaw Boulevard.
“On all the issues that matter to young people — affordable housing, health care, sustainability and the environment — among many others, MRT has not only talked the talk, he has walked the walk.
No one else has built hundreds of units of affordable housing; miles of bike lanes, acres of park space and — don’t forget this — a hospital to serve a Black and Latino community in need,” Sanchez said.
“I’m an honorary young person!” MRT said in response. “I’m still young on the inside, and when it comes to doing this work — resolving our homeless and affordable housing crisis — working with this next generation of leaders makes me feel as ready to go as I was 10 years ago — or even 20 years ago. But that’s as far back as I’m going to reach,” he said with a laugh.