A Walk in the Park(er)May 17, 2023 Category: Feature, Featured, Short, Uncategorized
DisclosuresThe information in this article does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by Generocity, Civic Capital, or its employees.
UpdatesThis article was updated 7:04am on 5/18/2023 to reflect final voting results with updated maps and numbers from https://vote.phila.gov/results/
On May 16th, 234,859 ballots were cast in the 2023 Primary election, unofficially, 234,859 out of 1,025,354 registered voters – 23.28% according to the Philadelphia City Commissioners vote.phila site.
After a tight race that came down to the last ballot, Cherelle Parker, a West Oak Lane native that ran “for Mayor to make Philadelphia a safer, cleaner, and greener city with economic opportunity for everyone,” according to her interview with Committee of Seventy, historically won the Democratic Primary.
With 32.67% or 76,729of the votes, roughly 7% of the registered population, Parker is the first Black woman positioned to govern Philadelphia’s 1.576 million residents.
Who voted for Parker?
According to the Philadelphia City Commissioners ward map, Parker won roughly 40 of the 66 wards that make up Philadelphia. Wards where violent crime has decreased and home sale prices values have increased up to more than 250%, according to Pew’s 2023 State of the City.
While these wards have experienced gains, Philadelphia still sits with a 23% poverty rate with issues such under-employment, safety, and education still impacting the city as a whole. With a focus on being tougher on crime and more community-driven – will Philadelphia finally get an administration that works holistically with the nonprofits that live and serve those communities and the businesses that hire and profit from those communities in Parker?
From our Partners
Over the primary season, Parker, like many candidates, participated in more than a few debates and has shared her principles along the way. Here are some we were able to find.
“We cannot continue to do the same things expecting different results in this City. For too long, we’ve played politics and have stood on ideological high ground. This has led to us being at an impasse in addressing the issues most important to our City. We cannot continue to engage in an “Us vs Them” mentality. I will ensure that all stakeholders have a seat [at] the table, promote transparency amongst all departments, and build a consistency in the level of communication that stakeholders from various ideological perspectives have.” Parker interview with Committee of Seventy
“I am calling for 300 additional on-the-ground beat officers and bike patrol officers in our neighborhoods, particularly around our city’s commercial corridors, schools, recreation centers, and libraries, to keep Philadelphians safe. My hope is that these neighborhood officers will grow and nurture relationships with the community, rebuilding trust. They will be known by shopkeepers, people sitting on their steps, families, and teenagers as emissaries of the police department and city government — guardians, not warriors — who will serve and protect neighborhoods that are part of our community tapestry.” Parker Op-ed for the Inquirer
“My real-life lived experience is closest to the people feeling the most pain in our city. [E]veryone wants to have access to an opportunity to be self-sufficient to take care of themselves and not have to depend on government or anybody else to provide for them, that’s how we reduce gun violence, that’s how we make Philadelphia safer cleaner greener and provide access to Economic Opportunity for all and because ‘life for me ain’t been no crystal stair,’ as Langston Hughes says in his poem ‘Mother to son.’ [T]hat’s why I’m uniquely qualified to leave the city and I have the local and state the intergovernmental experience necessary to move us forward.” Parker interview with Turn Up! Turn Out!
“When you hear me mentioned Terry stops, or the term that is the most polarizing stop and frisk, I affirm that law enforcement across the nation has a right to use it as a tool when they do it constitutionally. And that is when officers have just called and reasonable suspicion. And you know, there are some folks, you know, and I realized this diamond, I want to be straight with your listening audience. There are people that are going to weaponize my perspective on this very controversial issue as a way to, you know, prevent me in their minds from becoming the first woman Mayor of the City of Philadelphia, but I want you to know, I don’t care, you know, what happens, you know, relative to this polarizing issue and where people fall, my perspective is not going to change. We need to use every tool, every legal tool, every constitutional tool available for our law enforcement to make public safety, our number one priority while they’re protecting and serving us and that won’t change.” Parker interview on The Dom Giordano Program
A Walk in the Park?
While historically, the winner of the Democratic Nomination has won the general election, November may not be a walk in the park.
With a win consisting of 7% of the registered population and 4% of the city’s total population, the needs of all of the city are now on the line. Furthermore, within her own constituency, matters such as stop and frisk are points that may have them on opposite sides of key issues. Regardless of where you stand and who you stand with, nonprofit leaders are now and always will be faced with providing dollars, programs, and advocacy to supplement where the mayor’s priorities will stop and needs continue.
What does Parker need to consider?