BROOKLYN, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--On Friday morning, Adem Bunkeddeko announced his bid for New York’s 9th Congressional district, covering Central Brooklyn, with a call to empower working people to live their best lives in a changing borough and economy.
“We are in the midst of a housing crisis,” said Bunkeddeko, an organizer, nonprofit leader, and longtime member of Brooklyn Community Board #8. “We can’t build housing fast enough to meet demand and the rent laws aren’t enough, either. To save our neighborhoods, we need to ensure that residents are also owners who share in the prosperity brought by new investments in the neighborhood.”
“I want to bring new ideas into a party that has lost its way,” Bunkeddeko continued. “The pioneering Brooklyn Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm once ran for president to be ‘a catalyst for change.’ That inspired me and should inspire all of us. Politicians cannot get elected, take a check, and do nothing. They have to answer to the people and make their lives better. We forgot that we’re the party of working people and, when push came to shove, we didn’t know how to help them and their kids prosper in a changing world. The answer is community ownership: ownership by working people of the means of their own support.”
“That’s why I’ll fight for a 21st-century Mitchell-Lama housing program that will support low-equity cooperatives so renters have a chance to own. That’s why I’ll fight to support local hiring and to create worker-owned businesses. That’s why I’ll fight to dramatically expand the Earned Income Tax Credit, to free people to invest in themselves and their children rather than be forced to live hand-to-mouth working jobs without a future. We know how to do this. It’s been done before and it’s been done in other places. We just need the courage to do the right thing.”
A longtime Crown Heights resident, Adem was born and raised in New York City. His parents are refugees who fled Uganda’s civil war to seek sanctuary and opportunity in the United States.
New York Times columnist Ginia Bellafante noted in her Thursday Big City column that, “Adem Bunkeddeko... has caught the attention of several politically powerful people in the city, including [former Lt. Governor Richard] Ravitch and the prominent civil rights activist Vernon Jordan, who are both supporting his candidacy for congress next year....
Mr. Bunkeddeko is running with an aggressive agenda on housing, one that would support the creation not just of vaguely affordable rental apartments, but of routes to ownership for families making between $30,000 and $80,000 a year.”
Adem has tried to pay forward the sacrifices his family made through a career in public service. Beginning as a grassroots organizer, Adem has since held leadership positions from which to fight for meaningful causes, including at the Bedford-Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation, Empire State Development Corporation, and Brooklyn Community Services. Throughout this time, he also served on Brooklyn Community Board #8.
A product of the New York City public school system, Adem earned scholarships to attend both boarding school and college. He received a B.A. from Haverford College, where he studied Political Science and Philosophy, and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
For more information, contact the campaign at (914) 468-4459 or visit www.ademforcongress.com.