Opinion: Ces Rosales for Berkeley City Council District 7

Ces is a woman who has a long history fighting for civil rights.  I know she will represent her city with integrity, commitment and unceasing energy.

I’m biased.  Ces Rosales is my long-time friend, and I strongly support her for City Council District 7.  Ces is a woman who has a long history fighting for civil rights.  I know she will represent her city with integrity, commitment and unceasing energy.

Ces loves Berkeley and considers it her adopted city.  She was born in the Philippines, fought for student’s rights against the brutal Marcos regime and eventually had to leave the country because Ces and her family’s lives were in danger. She truly understands the importance of free speech, the right to assemble and an independent press, all things we see threatened here under Trump. When Ces came to this country she continued to work for social justice, and with her degree in communications, she started to help organizations with messaging and design. She ultimately grew a successful business that did good work for the community and created opportunities for employees. Ces understands the challenges of running a small business, which will help her with the Berkeley business community.  With these skills, plus a progressive perspective, she can bring creative solutions to our city.

I have worked alongside Ces in broad political coalitions: When I was chair of the California Democratic Party Women’s Caucus, we worked together to build a mentoring project for young women considering political office–a program which received an award from the California Young Dems, we increased the visibility of women running for office in the rural areas, and Ces reached out to other State Dem Parties to pass the Equal Rights Amendment. I have also worked with Ces in the Alameda Democratic Party, the East Bay Women’s Political Alliance, and the Wellstone Democratic Renewal Club. Ces was the founder and organizer of the East Bay No on Prop 8 Campaign based in Berkeley.  She is a lifelong fighter for civil rights who works tirelessly for what she believes in.  I can say without doubt, that Ces has the ability to work with people of differing opinions and is skillful at building coalitions.

Ces’s priorities are good ones: affordable housing; public safety and social justice; infrastructure maintenance; health equity and access; and mitigating climate change. Ces supports Measure O and will work to create partnerships with the private sector and the UC Berkeley to increase student housing.  Ces will champion community safety and increasing sensitivity training for BPD and UCPD relating to the issues of sexual violence both on and off campus and racial disparities in the treatment of students and community members.

Ces recognizes the city of Berkeley’s leadership in environmental issues. She wants to continue the good work and supports the Berkeley Climate Action Plan, the 50/50 CAP, the East Bay Community Energy Program, a green downtown and strengthening bicycle transportation so it is safer and thus used more by our community members. As the former chair and current member of Berkeley’s Health Commission, Ces feels passionate about health access and equity. She strongly supports single payer and will work with the city, the county and our state representatives to bring creative solutions to saving Alta Bates. Ces will also explore the possibility of providing free wi-fi throughout Berkeley.  She understands that access to the Internet should not be limited to those who can afford it.

With due respect to all the candidates, for me, Ces Rosales is the strongest. A vote for Ces is a vote for experience, integrity and commitment.  To read more about Ces, go to cesrosalesforberkeley.com.

Karen Weinstein is a Democratic Party activist and an elected member of the Peralta Board of Trustees* (*ID purposes only).