We're really excited to be growing our campaign team! Check out this new paid part-time Field Organizer position and please help spread the word:
Title: Field Organizer
Start date: ASAP
Organization: “Jasmine for Buncombe” is the 2020 re-election campaign for County Commissioner Jasmine Beach-Ferrara, running in District 2. Learn more at: http://www.jasmineforbuncombe.org/
Position Description: We are seeking an energetic, motivated part-time Field Organizer (starting at 5 hours/week) who is passionate about connecting with people and is ready to join a campaign team that believes field organizing comes first. This role involves voter contact through phone banking and door knocking, entering data, supporting volunteers, and staying nimble. The ideal candidate is a strategic and creative thinker, goal oriented, and excited about learning and growing. They are also a flexible team player who meets deadlines and is comfortable rolling up their sleeves for the wide range of tasks involved in a campaign.
In this position you will:
We’re looking for candidates who bring:
This position will earn $15 per hour and work 5 hours per week (20 hours per month).
Please send a cover letter explaining why this position compels you and a current resume by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please use “Field Organizer application” as your subject line.
The "Jasmine for Buncombe" campaign looks forward to hearing from all applicants and strongly encourages women, people of color, members of the LGBTQ community, and members of other minority communities to apply.
North Carolina districts are in the news pretty much every day now and continue to be in flux as we head into the 2020 election cycle. Simple solution: we need independent redistricting commissions, ideally at both the state and local levels. But for now, we weather the chaos caused by extreme gerrymandering.
Last week brought significant news about Buncombe County's General Assembly and County Commission districts. A state court accepted the redrawn maps that the General Assembly had created in September; Common Cause, the plaintiff in the case challenging the previous districts has announced they will file a narrow repeal regarding some districts in the state, but this does not include Buncombe County districts.
So what does this mean for you? For a lot of people, it means your districts - both state and county - have changed; for others, you're in the same district. Under the new maps, I move from District 1 to District 2, which means I'll be running for re-election in District 2. I look forward to connecting with more folks across the district and listening to the issues that matter most to people. But one thing that's clear is that County Commissioners represent the entire county and everywhere I go I hear people talking about issues like affordable housing, early childhood education, and how we respond to the opioid crisis.
You can check out this helpful map that Parker Sloan, candidate for County Commission in District 3, created to see where you live.
Also at play are Congressional districts across the state, which have been ruled unconstitutional due to partisan gerrymandering by the same three-judge panel that decided the state district case. The General Assembly has been ordered to redraw Congressional districts and embarked on that project today. You can read more coverage here.
Oh, one more thing: the districts will all be redrawn again after the 2020 Census. Buckle your seat belts.
It was inspiring to look around a packed hall in downtown Asheville last Monday night and see about 250 people gathered for a town hall on opioid issues. The stories in the room were personal, heartbreaking, inspiring, and motivating. We heard updates about the latest local data, which shows promising reduction in overdose deaths and ER visits, heard about new initiatives like offering Medication Assisted Treatment in the county jail and heard about the power of peer-based recovery and support programs. The event was co-hosted by Buncombe County, the City of Asheville, MAHEC, and Vaya. I was honored to be among those who spoke.
This issue - how we come together to end the opioid crisis - matters a lot to me personally and because of the many community member I've met who've been personally impacted. I truly believe that the path to recovery starts by meeting people where they are, listening, offering a hand, and then helping people access the care they need and deserve.
Throughout the event, we heard this message echoed: we have to end the stigma around addiction, we have to treat people as people not as their disease, and we have to be relentless in responding to this crisis.
You can read coverage on the county's website here: https://www.buncombecounty.org/countycenter/news-detail.aspx?id=18251
I wanted you to be the first to know that I’m running for re-election to Buncombe County Commission in 2020.
Serving on Commission since 2016 has been a tremendous honor. I’ve met folks all across our county and heard their stories, some joyful, some heartbreaking. Working with community partners and families, I’ve had the honor to help lead the creation of the county’s new Early Childhood Education and Development Fund and now chair the committee that advises this fund. I’ve championed new affordable housing initiatives and worked on new policy responses to the opioid epidemic.
People ask what it’s like to be on County Commission. My answer is pretty simple: I love it. My decision to run again is about wanting to keep representing your voice in Buncombe County and to keep working with you to create policies that help everyone in our community thrive. This means significantly expanding access to quality early childhood education and to safe affordable housing; ensuring we are nimble, compassionate and effective in our responses to the opioid epidemic; creating a 21st Century criminal justice system that ends practices of mass incarceration; and taking local action to respond to the threats of climate change.
Our community deserves the very best of what local government can be and for the full resources of county government to be focused resolutely on solving problems and serving people. I’ve been and will continue to be a voice for reform, transparency and accountability in our county government.
My wife, Meghann, and I have talked a lot about this decision and what it means for our family, which has grown in the past year as we welcomed Lily and Wyatt to the world and as Cal has started kindergarten. What we keep coming back to is this: we need people in government who get what it’s like to be a working family, who know first hand what discrimination feels like, and who understand the real impact that fair, just policies can make in people’s lives. I carry this understanding with me into every meeting I attend and every vote I take as a Commissioner.
From the start, my campaign has been about people coming together - to talk about what matters to them, to dream about what we can do in our community, and to get out and do the work. We built a campaign on the values of equality, community, and opportunity. When it comes to working with those who hold different beliefs, we choose empathy as a starting place; we're doubling down on that now in these times of great division in our nation, I hope you will join me in this campaign.
Can you chip in right now to help me get off to a strong start? Whether it’s $5, $50, or $100, your donation means we can talk to more voters to spread this message.
As you may know, the court-ordered process of redrawing NC General Assembly districts also means that Buncombe County Commission districts will be redrawn. We expect finalized new maps in the coming weeks.
Regardless of what the districts look like, I have more work to do and this December, I will file in whatever district I live in.
It is a great honor to wake up each day and serve our community and it would be a great honor to be re-elected to this role in 2020. I hope to see you at an upcoming community event and you can also follow campaign updates here.
"I’m tired of doing memorial services for people I love who have died of opioid overdoses," Rev. Mark Siler of Haywood Street Community, said on Tuesday night when he spoke at our Buncombe County Commission meeting. Rev. Siler was there to show support for a new program that would expand access to Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) at the Buncombe County Detention Center. His words echoed the many stories I have heard from people across our community whose lives have been impacted, often tragically, by the opioid crisis.
This past year, I've been honored to work with the Buncombe County Sheriff's Office, NC Department of Health and Human Services, and community partners on expanding access to MAT at the detention center. The Board of Commissioners passed a resolution endorsing this program by a unanimous 7-0 vote at our August 20th meeting.
Click here to read the rest of my recent op-ed, which ran in the Asheville Citizen Times.