This post has been updated.
West Side lawyer, activist, and self-described “policy wonk” Amara Enyia has jumped into the race for mayor of Chicago.
She’s the 11th candidate to announce a challenge to incumbent Mayor Rahm Emanuel in the February 2019 election.
Enyia ran for mayor in 2015 but dropped out of the race and endorsed then-Ald. Bob Fioretti.
She says she will direct investment to under served communities in Chicago and make sure every child can walk to a great neighborhood school.
Morning Shift checks in with Enyia about her platform and why she decided to jump into the race.
On charter schools
Amara Enyia: What we’ve seen over the last several years with charter school proliferation, which is really privatization of education, is we’re seeing the cannibalization of schools. The budget for your school is determined by the population of students in your school. When we saw charters popping up right next to neighborhood schools, what happened was those funds went to the charter schools, and essentially drained funds that could have gone to local neighborhood schools. So what the city has done is created an environment where the schools are competing with each other for a limited number of students.
On Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s plan to provide $8 million in grants to South and West Side businesses
Enyia: The [mayor’s] Neighborhood Opportunity Fund was created in 2016, several years after the mayor took office. And I think it shows you that this was not a priority from the very beginning. … Look at the scale. We can spend $55 million in public dollars on a stadium downtown, but then several disadvantaged communities are supposed to share $8 million.
Correction: Enyia is the 11th candidate to challenge Emanuel in the mayoral election.
GUEST: Amara Enyia, public policy consultant, lawyer, activist
LEARN MORE: Amara for Mayor 2019 (Campaign website)
Changing ‘The Chicago Way’ With Amara Enyia, Public Policy Consultant (Better Government Association 3/26/18)