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CD 45 Questionnaire

STONEWALL DEMOCRATIC CLUB OF NYC 2019 CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT SPECIAL ELECTION ENDORSEMENT QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSES

STONEWALL DEMOCRATS OF NYC

Section 1: CAMPAIGN INFORMATION

Candidate Full Name * Farah Louis Office Sought *

City Council 45th District

Full Name of Campaign Committees *

Friends of Farah Louis/Farah For City Council

Campaign Website http://www.farahlouis.com

Section 2: CANDIDATE EXPERIENCE (Short Answer)

Please provide brief responses to each of the following questions - cite specific examples of your policy proposals and/or previous actions as applicable.

List here the union, organizations (community, civic, media, issue groups), and elected officials that have endorsed you: *

1. Assemblymember Rodneyse Bichotte 2. Assemblymember Jaime Williams 3. Assemblymember Helene Weinstein 4. District Leader Ari Kagan 5. District Leader Lori Maslow 6. District Leader Lew Fidler 7. District Leader David Schwartz 8. City Council Member Helen Rosenthal 9. Jim Owles Democratic Club 10. Lambda Independent Democrats 11. Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams 12. Kings County Democratic Leader Frank Seddio 13. Teamsters 14. PSC 15. UFT 16. PEF

Have you ever endorsed any LGBT candidates? Which ones? *

The special election for the 45th City Council District is my first race as a candidate. Previously, I served as Council staff, so I have not publicly endorsed candidates before. However, I have certainly worked on behalf of LGBTQ candidates in the past: most recently, supporting then-Council Member Jumaane Williams’s campaign for Lieutenant Governor and working on his behalf with the ticket he and Cynthia Nixon formed; over the past three years, I’ve also campaigned for my good friend, District Leader Josue Pierre, in his initial election and re-election.

Please explain any activities and/or experiences that demonstrate your commitment to the LGBT movement, including any concrete achievements for the LGBT community that you are responsible for in your current, or previous, elected office/s or positions. *

I led our annual budgeting efforts as the Budget Director for then-Council Member Jumaane Williams. One of the budget priorities I am most proud of spearheading for then-Council Member Williams is our office’s work to ensure that the Brooklyn Community Pride Center received funding through the annual Schedule C funding process. It is critically important that the Brooklyn Community Pride Center receive support from districts such as Council District 45, where for a long time openly gay persons may not have felt like a support mechanism existed for them when help was needed. Bringing that kind of support -- budgetarily and through hosting events at the Center for then-Council Member Williams -- was meaningful to ensure CD 45 knew about its services and persons in-need felt they had a safe space to seek help or assistance of any kind.

What experience do you have to demonstrate you are the best person to represent the office you are seeking? *

No other candidate has the depth of experience representing the district and working on behalf of its constituents in other fora as I do.

STONEWALL DEMOCRATIC CLUB OF NYC 2019 CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT SPECIAL ELECTION ENDORSEMENT QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSES

I have over 15 years of experience working in and around government. Most recently, as mentioned above, I served as the Deputy Chief of Staff and Budget Director for then-City Council Member Jumaane Williams. In this role, I represented the Councilmember with the district’s faith community; coordinated amongst not-for-profits in receipt of city funding to ensure services were delivered for constituents; oversaw the constituent services operations for the district office; and managed the participatory budgeting submissions from community groups for the annual City Council budget process. I also developed a number of introductions and legislation to create local laws. I began working for then-Councilmember Williams as his Director of Community Outreach. Before that, I spent eight years as a mental health professional and healthcare administrator in Brooklyn, during which I was also an active 1199 member. I have also successfully launched a number of aggressive grassroots initiatives with various city agencies, nonprofit organizations and businesses. I facilitated workshops across the city and state including Brooklyn and hosted community events with and for various elected officials, including former NYC Comptroller Bill Thompson, then-Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, State Senator Kevin Parker, then-City Council Member Jumaane D. Williams, Assemblymember Helene Weinstein and Assemblymember Rodneyse Bichotte.

Please detail any specific policy proposals you may have that will affect the LGBT community, which are not addressed in the following sections. *

Apart from continuing the tradition of the 45th Council District funding the Brooklyn Community Pride Center and groups like SAGE, I intend to work with my colleagues on a host of targeted investments, including holistic housing for LGBTQ seniors and mental health professionals / social workers in schools, with an eye toward ensuring those professionals are trained and understand the pressures and obstacles faced by LGBTQ youth. Two of my key issue areas--housing and education--would benefit tremendously from these investments. An incredibly burdened and under-served community that cuts across the City (including the 45th Council District) is the LGBTQ senior community. Funding affordable housing projects pioneered by groups like SAGE and the Stonewall Community Development Corporation, which look at the critical needs of LGBTQ seniors and intend to co-locate essential services for seniors in those buildings, would make a considerable dent for the LGBTQ community and help develop a model for affordable housing for all seniors. In schools, we’ve seen too many examples of under-reporting of bullying and no outlet for LGBTQ youth to seek help. We need more counselors (whether social workers or other mental health professionals) in schools who can work with youth in need. I will fight to provide school districts with funding to hire counselors for our public schools. Along with these ideas, I am open to any conversation that any group is willing to have with me on new and other ways to fund programs or services that will benefit the LGBTQ community. I also intend to lobby on a number of issues that do not traditionally rely on funding from the Council -- including lobbying my colleagues in the NYS Legislature to include LGBTQ in the MWBE definition, and pressuring the Mayor’s Office to engage with unions that represent City employees to find a way to help unions provide coverage for PrEP and HIV anti-retrovirals in their healthcare plans. These issues have the potential to make a real impact in the LGBTQ community but do not “increase funding” in the traditional sense.

STONEWALL DEMOCRATIC CLUB OF NYC 2019 CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT SPECIAL ELECTION ENDORSEMENT QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSES

Section 3: POLICY POSITIONS (yes or no)

Do you support full marriage equality for same-sex couples? *

Yes

Do you support full adoption rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender couples? *

Yes

Would you fight for funding for senior housing for the LGBT community? *

Yes

Will you support increasing funding for both emergency shelter beds and transitional beds for homeless youth, a huge percentage of whom are from the LGBT community? *

Yes

Will you oppose the granting of city shelter contracts to any large, warehouse-style youth shelters, which would require a waiver from the State law limiting shelter size? *

Yes

Will you support increased funding for the HIV/AIDS Services Administration? *

Yes Will you support fully funding NYC Department of Health’s plan to expand PEP & PreP Access? * Yes

Do you support ensuring all individuals are able to access medically appropriate health care services, including reproductive health care, regardless of their gender identity? *

Yes

Will you hire openly LGBT staff and/or designate a liaison to the LGBTQ community? *

Yes

If you currently hold or have previously held office - have you allocated public dollars to support organizations and/or programming that primarily provides services to members of LGBT community?

NOT APPLICABLE

If you currently hold or have previously held office - have you ever voted against and/or abstained on voting on legislation that supported the LGBT community?

NOT APPLICABLE

If seeking office for the first time - if elected, would you give strong consideration to LGBT service organizations seeking public funding from your office?

Yes

Do you oppose the use of condoms as evidence of prostitution in criminal cases? *

Yes

Will you join the LGBT community in calling on the New York City Police Department to better investigate the murder, assault, or hate crimes against LGBT individuals, particularly trans people of color? *

Yes

Will you support a policy change to ensure the New York City Police Department appropriately genders individuals when releasing information? *

Yes Do you support the inclusion of School Climate as a measure of Non-Academic School Success, as part of the implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act? * Yes

Do you support mandatory LGBT-inclusive, multicultural education as a pre-certification requirement for teachers? *

Yes

Do you support curriculums for New York City Schools that include important moments in LGBT civil rights history, and that challenge racism, sexism and homophobia? *

Yes

Do you oppose permitting the use of NYC public school facilities for religious services or any other sectarian uses? *

No

STONEWALL DEMOCRATIC CLUB OF NYC 2019 CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT SPECIAL ELECTION ENDORSEMENT QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSES

If no, please explain.

NYC public school facilities should be available for use after school hours for religious services so long as the facilities are also equally available for use by other outside organizations. In the 45th City Council District, religious institutions in need of space follow the approved process for use of space: they apply for a permit from the Departments of Education and Citywide Administrative Services. With that permit, those institutions can use the school’s facilities. I understand that there are legitimate concerns in how taxpayer funded public spaces are used, and while I support the issuance of permits for religious institutions to use public schools after school hours, I am open to any conversation on those uses.

Do you support amending the City’s Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprise (M/WBE) Certification Program to include LGBT preferred contracting? *

Yes

If endorsed will you display the endorsement of the Stonewall Democratic Club of NYC in your literature whenever you list other endorsements, including on your campaign website? *

Yes

Have you ever endorsed or financially supported any candidate for public office or current elected official with a track record of working against LGBT equality? *

No

Would you in the future, endorse or financially support any candidate for public office or current elected official with a track record of working against LGBT equality? *

No

STONEWALL DEMOCRATIC CLUB OF NYC 2019 CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT SPECIAL ELECTION ENDORSEMENT QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSES

Candidate Full Name * Monique Chandler-Watermnan Office Sought * New York City Council - 45th District Full Name of Campaign Committees *

Monique for NYC

Campaign Website http://www.moniquefornyc.com

Campaign Twitter Account

@moniquefornyc.com

Campaign Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/MoniqueforNYC/

Section 2: CANDIDATE EXPERIENCE (Short Answer)

Please provide brief responses to each of the following questions - cite specific examples of your policy proposals and/or previous actions as applicable.

List here the union, organizations (community, civic, media, issue groups), and elected officials that have endorsed you: *

Public Advocate Jumaane Williams New York State Assembly Member Nick Perry New York State Senator Kevin Parker New York State Senator Zellnor Myrie New York City Council Majority Leader Laurie Cumbo National Association of Social Workers

Have you ever endorsed any LGBT candidates? Which ones? *

Please explain any activities and/or experiences that demonstrate your commitment to the LGBT movement, including any concrete achievements for the LGBT community that you are responsible for in your current, or previous, elected office/s or positions. *

I love my community, but there is work to do to educate residents about sexual identity and tolerance. We have come a long way and we have much further to go and grow. Sexual and gender identity are not natural conversations in far too many neighborhoods and more importantly, families. I have seen what happens when we marginalize people. As a teenager, I watched a family member I was very close to struggle as tried to deny his sexuality, then when he came out, he was rejected by many of the individuals he was closest with. As a result, he wrestled with emotional and mental health challenges but I constantly supported him and continue to support him to this day. Also, as the founder of a non-profit organization that provides youth services, I see my role as a facilitator of these conversations for our young people. All of our programs stress respect, education and love with a heavy lean toward self empowerment. I see myself as a protector of my community, particularly the youth who live in more socially conservative-leaning households. It is a fact that Kings County Hospital, which serves my district, has the highest rate of new HIV cases in our municipal hospital system. Most of these cases are men of color who have sex with men (MSM), many don’t return to the hospital after they receive their diagnosis. This tells me, not only do we need to educate

STONEWALL DEMOCRATIC CLUB OF NYC 2019 CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT SPECIAL ELECTION ENDORSEMENT QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSES

the wider public to erase stigmas, but we need to work harder to make our community more supportive of the LGBTQ community. As the Council Member representing this district, I would like my office to be a resource for people seeking LGBTQ services and/or support while emplowering and embracing members of the community as important allies to the office.

What experience do you have to demonstrate you are the best person to represent the office you are seeking? *

I am the best person for this office because I hear the voices and know the needs of my community. I was born and raised in the 45th District. I attended the same elementary and middle school as my mother, and my children followed. I made the conscious decision to stay in my district after getting married, starting a family and completing college. I have fought side by side with members of the community from the NYPD to the clergy

Please detail any specific policy proposals you may have that will affect the LGBT community, which are not addressed in the following sections. *

Section 3: POLICY POSITIONS (yes or no)

Do you support full marriage equality for same-sex couples? *

Yes

Do you support full adoption rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender couples?*

Yes

Would you fight for funding for senior housing for the LGBT community? *

Yes

Will you support increasing funding for both emergency shelter beds and transitional beds for homeless youth, a huge percentage of whom are from the LGBT community? *

Yes

Will you oppose the granting of city shelter contracts to any large, warehouse-style youth shelters, which would require a waiver from the State law limiting shelter size? *

Yes

Will you support increased funding for the HIV/AIDS Services Administration? *

Yes

Will you support fully funding NYC Department of Health’s plan to expand PEP & PreP Access? *

Yes

Do you support ensuring all individuals are able to access medically appropriate health care services, including reproductive health care, regardless of their gender identity? *

Yes

Will you hire openly LGBT staff and/or designate a liaison to the LGBTQ community? *

Yes

If you currently hold or have previously held office - have you allocated public dollars to support organizations and/or programming that primarily provides services to members of LGBT community?

I have not previously held elected office.

STONEWALL DEMOCRATIC CLUB OF NYC 2019 CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT SPECIAL ELECTION ENDORSEMENT QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSES

If you currently hold or have previously held office - have you ever voted against and/or abstained on voting on legislation that supported the LGBT community?

I have not held elected office but will be a strong LGBT ally in the NYC Council.

If seeking office for the first time - if elected, would you give strong consideration to LGBT service organizations seeking public funding from your office?

Yes

Do you oppose the use of condoms as evidence of prostitution in criminal cases? *

Yes

Will you join the LGBT community in calling on the New York City Police Department to better investigate the murder, assault, or hate crimes against LGBT individuals, particularly trans people of color? *

Yes

Will you support a policy change to ensure the New York City Police Department appropriately genders individuals when releasing information? *

Yes Do you support the inclusion of School Climate as a measure of Non-Academic School Success, as part of the implementation of the Every Student Succeeds Act? * Yes

Do you support mandatory LGBT-inclusive, multicultural education as a pre-certification requirement for teachers? *

Yes

Do you support curriculums for New York City Schools that include important moments in LGBT civil rights history, and that challenge racism, sexism and homophobia? *

Yes

Do you oppose permitting the use of NYC public school facilities for religious services or any other sectarian uses? *

Yes

Do you support amending the City’s Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprise (M/WBE) Certification Program to include LGBT preferred contracting? *

Yes

If endorsed will you display the endorsement of the Stonewall Democratic Club of NYC in your literature whenever you list other endorsements, including on your campaign website? *

Yes

Have you ever endorsed or financially supported any candidate for public office or current elected official with a track record of working against LGBT equality? *

No

Would you in the future, endorse or financially support any candidate for public office or current elected official with a track record of working against LGBT equality? *

No