Words seem inadequate when such horrific acts of racially charged violence are happening all over our country.
In the wake of the killing of Alton Sterling and then Philando Castile, I think it’s important for white people like me to echo the voices of the #BLM movement. So that’s what I've done. I’ve had the privilege of working with some amazing talented people over at LBS, the Baltimore Block and other locals that I consider BLM leaders even if these peoples and groups choose to identify independently of that label.
I echo their calls for police reform. As a white ally I have to say how disgusted I am with the lack of leadership and simple deafening silence on these issues that I hear from our law makers in Annapolis, City Council, and our Mayor. Baltimore doesn’t need your thoughts and prayers and feelings. BALTIMORE NEEDS YOU TO STEP UP AS LEADERS AND DO YOUR JOB!
We need civilians on police trial boards. We now have a powerful coalition of activists, organizers, astute aspiring political leaders all calling for this important reform that should in no way be controversial.
We also need leaders that will stop cowering in the face of the FOP. I’ve toured Baltimore Police Stations and I’ve talked to officers in our community.
Police officers want decent facilities that are clean and filled with the latest in policing technology. Instead they have dated computer systems, a lack of technical support, and facilities that are ancient.
Police officers need excellent health insurance and a lot of time off for healing from a very physical job. I met a young officer who sorely injured his back during the uprising protests. I told him what I would tell any worker in Baltimore. You need to fight HR and get yourself the paid time off and medical treatment you need.
But the FOP doesn’t grandstand and make a stink for the health of the average police officer. Instead they fight civilians who are genuinely interested in working with the police to make Baltimore a better place.
The events in Dallas clearly show us that we have a lot of work to do in this country when it comes to race relations. It also reminds us that being a police officer is a dangerous job. But I will not let the FOP scare me into playing along with the idea that BPD should be siloed off from the community it serves. Bringing civilians into trial boards and other corners of the BPD will help heal the relationship between BPD and the community. It will make us a more cohesive community. And I think the FOP should be far more concerned with the health of the average officer on the street instead of childishly insulting prosecutors who are doing their job or stopping concerned civilians from getting involved with the department.Read more
The Ian Schlakman campaign is incredibly proud to announce two crucial endorsements.
One is the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA). The newly formed Baltimore branch of DSA was very excited to support Ian at its recent membership meeting. In attendance were national leaders from DSA who were there to help the fledgling chapter. They made it clear at the meeting that helping independent socialist candidates like Ian is a strong priority for DSA.
The DSA's support was critical for the national spread of the Sanders for President Campaign. DSA seeks to take their members enthusiasm for Bernie and funnel it into local campaigns across the country. Ian Schlakman’s campaign is one of the first for the Baltimore DSA to champion.
The second endorsement comes from Socialist Alternative. Socialist Alternative's regional chapter in DC endorsed Schlakman earlier this month.
Socialist Alternative's (SA) local is a key endorsement for Schlakman as SA is the driving force behind city council member Kshama Sawant in Seattle. Sawant became the first socialist elected to a major city council in decades. She broke through the Democratic Party’s iron grip on the Seattle Council. That’s something Ian Schlakman hopes to emulate this Nov 8th when voters head back to the polls in the Baltimore General Election.
Now, with the support of DSA and SA Schlakman will be working to build national support for his locally-focused campaign. Similarly to how Kshama Sawant was able to capture the national consciousness in 2013, Schlakman looks to draw national attention to his agenda for Baltimore in 2016.
For Immediate Release:
Monday June 13 2016
Ian Schlakman's Campaign Statement on the Pulse Nightclub Shooting in Orlando
We want to extend our deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of those killed and injured in this unspeakable act of violence against the LGBTQ community. Everyone on my campaign is simply in shock today. The horrific violence carried out in Orlando is devastating and incomprehensible.
On a personal note, I have many friends and family members in the Orlando area. They are all safe but of course they're as shocked and horrified by this violence as we all are. I want to be clear that I stand in solidarity with the LGBTQ community and the Orlando area community as they grieve and come to terms with this terrible act of hate that terrorized the community.
Acts of terror and hate can occur in any community. I am very grateful that the LGBTQ community here in Baltimore, specifically the GLCCB, has hotlines and other resources for those here in Baltimore that are traumatized by this event. If you need to talk to someone about this tragedy I implore you to get help and seek community. I personally will be at a candlelight vigil this evening in my City Council district on the corner of Charles Street and North Ave at 7pm. Details about community resources and the event this evening are at the bottom of this statement.
We can expect much national debate in the coming weeks and months about gun violence, terrorism, intolerance, and fundamentalism. All I will say for right now is that everyone deserves to feel safe in their community. I will do my best to help my community here in Baltimore to engage in a strong dialogue that helps us find solutions to stop the violence that plagues the LGBTQ and all of our diverse communities that call Baltimore home.
For Immediate Release
April 4, 2016
Ian Schlakman - Socialist candidate seeking the Green Party nomination for Baltimore City Council - has raised more in total than all but two of the Democratic candidates in the ongoing race for the District 12 seat. Schlakman's donation totals are second only to a single Democratic candidate.
Of particular interest in this race is that the presumed front runner has only filed affidavits, which indicate he's raised less than a thousand dollars total to date since the race began.
"I think our fundraising reflects the fact that voters are ready to see another party in Baltimore", said Schlakman. Schlakman continued "We believe that having the second highest fundraising in the district shows we're prepared to take on and win against any of the many Democratic challengers."
By state law, Green Party candidates are not eligible to run in state-financed primary elections. The Green Party primary process is ongoing and ends May 1st. Schlakman is running unopposed for the Green nomination for the District 12 seat.
In the last report filed with the Maryland State Board of Elections, Schlakman disclosed about $8,400 in total contributions including in-kind, over $3,200 in total receipts and over $1,500 cash in hand. Schlakman's campaign spent primarily on media outreach and production of materials for distribution to District 12 voters. The campaign also spent a bit on campaign technology, laying the groundwork for a competitive, modern, and high tech campaign.
Ian Schlakman Declares Victory in First District 12 Forum
For Immediate Release
February 8, 2016
Ian Schlakman declares a victory for his campaign and the people of Baltimore following last Monday's Harwood Association forum that took place one week ago.
Schlakman is a Socialist seeking the Green Party's nomination for the 12th District City Council seat.
"It is victory for the people of Baltimore that a strong people's advocate was able to present such a vision for Baltimore," said Schlakman. "Not only did I present the most inspirational vision for a Baltimore designed to meet the needs of the people, but I presented the most specific policy proposals of any candidate."
"I represent the ideological campaign Baltimore wants and the proven policy proposals that Baltimore needs."
Schlakman calls for an immediate $15/hour minimum wage for all Baltimore workers. He also calls for a Civilian Review Board with full powers over police, a reassessment of property tax to give relief to working class families and an end to multinational corporation tax give aways.
"For establishment candidates - some of who joined me on stage at the Harwood Association forum - the Socialist idea of fair wages, housing, and public safety as a human right is an unknown concept. For me, this is how the City Council needs to treat residents of Baltimore - like people trying to find the best way to fulfill their human rights, not as customers who might get city services if they complain loud enough."
"They rely on market-based solutions to fund Baltimore's needs," said Schlakman. "Their theory is that if we give enough of the city away to corporations we will eventually see dividends once millionaire developers decide they've made enough. But it's never enough. The market will not provide what we can get by treating housing, food, utilities, and a basic income as a human right that we can work together to fulfill."
"Stepping onto the stage at the Harwood Association forum and simply declaring the alternative to the market-driven model was a victory in itself," said Schlakman. "But I am not not satisfied with that. My supporters and I are going to build this campaign until Election Day and bring strong Socialist leadership to the Baltimore City Council."
Ian Schlakman calls for emergency support for city residents during Winter Storm Jonas
For Immediate Release:
January 21, 2016
As the city prepares for Winter Storm Jonas, City Council candidate Ian Schlakman calls on city leaders to take immediate emergency action to provide support for thousands of individuals experiencing homeless in Baltimore City.
"If a tornado or tsunami were to hit Baltimore this weekend, the city would have no problem finding enough unused city-owned property to shelter 3,000 individuals," says Schlakman. "There's no reason why the city can't respond to winter weather the same way it would any natural disaster."
Ian Schlakman Seeks 12th District City Council Nomination
For Immediate Release:
November 30, 2015
Schlakman currently serves as an New Economy Maryland Fellow with the Institute for Policy Studies, a DC-based progressive think tank.
Schlakman's platform builds on his experience as a technology entrepreneur to cultivate District 12 as a hub for tech start-ups, high-speed transit solutions and modern communication tools.
"I am running for City Council because I have a unique background in guiding people and organizations on technology, and a passion for innovating and reinventing our economy," said Schlakman.