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Bryant Odega on the Rift Magazine

This 23-Year-Old Might Become The First POC to Represent His District on LA City Council

Interview by Joaquin Romero and Jelina Liu

Photo by Abieyuwa Omoruyi

JR: In terms of LA Politics in general, one of the biggest stories recently has been what’s going on in Echo Park with the removal of the homeless and the police response and the demonstrations in response to that. A couple of things you focus on in your campaign right now are the issues of housing justice, you have a Housing for All proposal on your campaign platform, and also police reform. Can you outline where you stand on those issues. I saw that you took a No Police Money pledge recently, is that right?

...There is a link between a disinvestment in social services and an increase in law enforcement money. And so what we need to do is reverse that; we need to reinvest in our communities so that they’re safer. The reason why communities like Brentwood are so much safer, is not because they have such a heavy police presence — because they don't. It’s because they have more resources. So that’s what we need here in CD-15. Communities like Watts, communities like Wilmington need resources, we need jobs, we need cleaner air, we need cleaner water, we need folks being more secure in their housing situation. And then we can have more public safety in that regard.
Governing via police violence isn’t governing at all: it’s oppression. So we need to end that, especially after last year.

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