經由我家的掙扎，我看到了政府有多重要，卻經常在你最需要幫助時，是那麼脫節。無論是爭取讓我的妹妹們得到在學校需要有的東西，爭取在鄰里巷弄開辦一家小企業，或者是為我自己的小孩在波士頓公校系統中摸索，原本應該提供支援的市府機構，卻讓我們遭遇障礙。當我遇見有同樣情況的其他人 – 要照顧家人，扶養小孩，想開辦生意的人和設計得並不能為每個人服務的系統對抗時，我聽到了同樣的沮喪聲音。
Growing up, I never thought I would run for office one day. As the daughter of immigrants, I understood from my youngest days how my family and so many others feel unseen and unheard in our society. When my mom began struggling with mental illness as I was finishing college, I became her caregiver and raised my sisters. In those days as we were trying to figure out how to go on in the depths of family crisis, it felt like we were alone, invisible, and powerless.
Through my family’s struggles, I’ve seen just how much government matters, and how big of a disconnect there often is when you most need help. Whether it was fighting to get my sisters what they needed in schools, fighting to open a neighborhood small business, or navigating BPS with my own children, we met barriers from city agencies that were supposed to provide support. And when I met others in the same situation—caring for a family member, raising kids, trying to open a business—I heard the same frustrations of fighting a system that wasn’t designed to work for everyone.
I went to law school to learn how to navigate and change these systems so other families wouldn’t face the same challenges. And from working in City Hall for Mayor Tom Menino, and on my former law professor Senator Elizabeth Warren’s first campaign, I saw how government and politics can help solve problems, remove barriers, and empower people. That’s why I ran for City Council in 2013, and why I work everyday to build community and push for the future that our kids deserve.
On the City Council, I’ve worked in coalition to deliver results to transform what’s possible when we think big. I've worked to expand the ranks of women, people of color, and young people in positions of leadership. I’ve stood alongside activists, advocates, and community members to lead the nation in providing paid parental leave, fighting the climate crisis, changing the conversation on transportation, standing up against corporate interests like Airbnb, and rooting out corruption in our bureaucracies. I know Boston can be a welcoming city where we can all thrive—and there’s so much more we need to do together.
This work is deeply personal for me. As a mom to Blaise and Cass, everyday I feel the urgency of families fighting the system to hear us, and to build communities that are healthy, safe, and resilient. Now’s the time for us to lead.