A Data-driven Champion

Dear 46A Resident,

My name is Daniel Perez, and I support Brittany Edwards for State House in 46A. I am co-hosting a party for Brittany at the home of former St. Louis Park School Board member Julie Sweitzer, 8925 W 31st St., Saint Louis Park, on Saturday, January 20 from 2-3:30 p.m., and would like to invite you to join us. 

I moved to Saint Louis Park from Mexico when I was a freshman in high school. I only spoke Spanish, beyond what I had been taught in intro level school classes in Mexico and through watching MTV, and other English programming. However, the great support of my family and friends, combined with the excellent education I experienced at Saint Louis Park High School helped me catch up and excel. It was frightening for many years to live as a kid who was undocumented. Students who are undocumented do not have access to financial aid, so I had to rely on the support of my aunt to secure loans for undergrad and graduate school at the University of Minnesota. Now I am a School Social Worker at Saint Louis Park High School. It means so much for me to be able to support students in the same way that my teachers and community supported me.

Brittany and I met during graduate school, where she was the President of the University of Minnesota’s graduate and professional student body. I was a representative from our College of Education and Human Development. I told Brittany about my background as an undocumented student, and the struggles we face. Brittany immediately worked to support policies I recommended to make life better for undocumented students on campus, and statewide.

Brittany created a network of all the student governments statewide, in order to support the DREAM Act, and to get Senator Franken to sign onto legislation to support textbook affordability. I’m not sure why no one had thought of getting all the student governments to work together to support issues that affect students, but she did. This is how she works, as an organizer, she creates coalitions of support across difference. She also got the student governments at the University to partner on shared policy, such as the tobacco-free campus policy that our health clinic had tried to get passed for a decade, before Brittany offered to help. 

Brittany is a champion for data-driven policies that help people who otherwise do not have a voice. That’s what I want from an elected official, as a seeker of social justice. I am a former DACA recipient, currently I am a Legal Permanent Resident, and now is a scary time. I have to do something to make a difference, and for me, supporting someone like Brittany is a way for me to know I am helping elect a champion for people who need it.

A few weeks ago, Brittany came to shadow me at Saint Louis Park High School. I was flattered when my Assistant Principal said she had picked the best person she could have observed, but it didn’t surprise me because Brittany knows how to identify great leaders. She sought to understand what we can do to address the Opportunity Gap by looking at the bigger system of what is needed in terms of economic justice for our students. She listened to the educators who care for our students, which is the right start. 

Please come to our upcoming house party, you can find Brittany's campaign events on Facebook, and go to brittanyforhouse.com to sign up to caucus for Brittany on Tuesday, February 6 at 7 p.m. Your precinct is: {Precinct}. Saint Louis Park precincts caucus at SLP High School. Golden Valley precincts caucus at Meadowbrook Elementary, and Plymouth and Medicine Lake precincts caucus at Plymouth Middle School. Please become a delegate for Brittany at the Senate District Convention on Sunday, March 11 at Saint Louis Park High School.

 

Sincerely,

 

Daniel Alberto Perez