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Austin has experienced growth but some constituencies have been left behind. What is your vision for the City’s role in funding/supporting the nonprofit network that provide much needed social services? What is your plan for addressing disparities and inequities in our community?

Steve Adler


The City can play a large role in providing support and services for those most in need. We can’t do it alone, though, so we rely on strong partnerships with non-profit service providers. I used to think that the non-profits filled the gaps that the government couldn’t afford to tackle. But I realize now that I had this backward. The community effort is so extensive that it is the government that fills in the gaps. The Mayor’s office has two significant powers: the power to convene and the use of the bully pulpit. The nonprofit network should see and consider these two tools as being available for their use. Over the last four years, I have tried to be present and to elevate and promote as much of the nonprofit activity in the city as is physically possible. (I’ve really enjoyed this part of the work of the office.) I was among the first council offices to call for and support the creation of the Equity Office. I helped initiate the Spirit of East Austin initiative, the final report which outlines successes in the Eastern Crescent is soon to be released. I convened the Mayor’s Task Force on Institutional Racism and Systemic Inequities, and I support many of the recommendations in that report. In fact, we have already implemented 60 of them, with another 90 in the works. And I am proud to have been part of the first 10/1 City Council that has developed a large body of work directed at dealing with the inequities in our city and I would like to be a part of the continuation of that work.