Khalilah Karim

Khalilah Karim for City Council At Large

Scroll to read about Khalilah’s ideas for the economy, housing, safety, and the environment; and her leadership experiences.

ECONOMY: "As large tech companies come to town, our neighborhoods, especially historically Black neighborhoods, are reeling from the effects of rapid gentrification. Black and brown Durhamites are being pushed further to the margins of our economy and are unable to build wealth for their families due to systemic inequality and policies that don’t center their experiences and needs.” -- Khalilah. Khalilah advocates for: investment in eviction diversion and permanent affordable housing / down payment assistance for first time homebuyers / more living-wage jobs, union jobs, and basic income opportunities.

HOUSING: "Black home ownership is currently on the decline, and there is a marked disparity between white and Black home ownership. Durham needs policies that provide additional avenues for Black home ownership.” -- Khalilah. Khalilah advocates for: encouraging developers to contribute more to the community than they take / ensuring that the neighborhood's Black homeowners gain equity as a result of rising property values / Increasing density within the urban core while investing in public green spaces

SAFETY: "Every Durham resident has the right to belong, to feel safe, to feel included. To do this, we need deep investments in programs like HEART and participatory budgeting, but also systemic solutions to inequity by investing in our most marginalized communities and ensuring improved access to research-backed solutions.” -- Khalilah. Khalilah advocates for: wrap-around services and employment / juvenile assistance and skill development / expansion of H.E.A.R.T and other service based programs that are alternatives to policing

ENVIRONMENT: “Everyone deserves a healthy environment that gives them access to healthy food, clean air and water, and accessible greens paces. As Durham grows, we must ensure that sustainability and equity are at the center.” – Khalilah. Khalilah advocates for: Green infrastructure in building (e.g. solar panels) / More inter-city transportation options (e.g., more connected and efficient public bus routes) / Access to alternate means of transportation (e.g. bike lanes, pedestrian pathways) / More parks, trails, and other public green spaces

LEADERSHIP: "“With a background as an organizer, I understand how important relationships are. I focus on where the other person is coming from and on moving us towards a solution. I believe the work of council includes deep listening – to each other and staff, but especially constituents.” -- Khalilah. Khalilah's leadership experience: worked on environmental sustainability and housing construction at PowerUP NC / fought for accessible childcare and living wages for union workers with Service Employees International Union (SEIU) / pushed back on the environmental impacts of climate change for Black and Brown communities with NC League of Conservation Voters

* All quotes are edited for length.