Councilman Chavez Interview Notes 2/24/23

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Councilman Jason Chavez represents Minneapolis Ward 9

Background

Born and raised in east Phillips, he started working for the government in response to his parent's immigration story. Councilman Chavez was tired of the lack of services for immigrants and the environmental injustices and housing instability in Ward 9.

There were many victims of environmental racism, for example: arsenic in the backyard. In order to save money, families would plant veggies but later on they would get a letter saying to not eat anything from the dirt. The letter would only come in English as well, so many people could not read it.

Councilman Chavez was a House Representative for a few years

• Police Accountability Act passed

• Economic development committee

Major challenges from day to day

Poverty is embedded in this ward. Many have low income, struggle to pay bills, and do not get support for medical attention. People will get sick or feel pain, but ignore it for years until it’s too late.

The 9th ward is 33% Latino, many undocumented and with no health insurance.

Solutions that are needed

Overdoses are impacting the ward severely. We are trying to implement Narcan kits. Safe injection sites are on the rise, but are a very controversial topic.

Healthy living, healthy food is needed. The lead removal program in people’s houses has been a project that has helped this community over the years.

Other organizations

• Pillsbury United- they do a lot of work in the community.

• There are not many Community Health Workers or health navigators in Ward 9, but this would be extremely beneficial.



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