Thank you Wildaliz & welcome Tiana, the work continues!
This month our Council team would like to reflect on Councilwoman Wildaliz Bermúdez and all that she has done for our city and our community. We would also like to introduce Tiana Hercules, Wildaliz’s personal recommendation, endorsed by WFP, to replace her on Hartford City Council.
If you haven’t already heard, Councilwoman Bermúdez announced this month that come January, she will be stepping down from her position on City Council for personal and family reasons. Her statement can be found here.
Words cannot begin to describe just how much Wildaliz has meant to our city, our community, and our WFP City Council team. Since being sworn in for her first term in 2016, Wildaliz has consistently brought a sense of energy, integrity, and transparency that Hartford residents had been longing for from their politicians. If we could redefine politics and politicians in Hartford, Wildaliz would be the standard. On behalf of our City Council WFP team, and the Hartford community, thank you, Wildaliz.
Whenever possible, Wildaliz raised up others who shared her values and encouraged them to lead and fight for marginalized members of our community: leaders such as Claudine Fox, Joshua Michtom, and now Tiana Hercules.
If you have not yet had a chance to learn about Tiana, make sure to check out her introduction page and check Wildaliz’s social media posts introducing her on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram. You can also follow Tiana on Instagram or Twitter to keep up with her advocacy! Once Tiana is sworn in, keep an eye out for a new website name from us!
Now on to what else we’ve been up to this Fall and Winter!
In The Community
As the Omicron coronavirus variant continues to pose a new threat to public health, we will transition back to prioritizing community events held virtually. It is of the utmost importance for us to keep our community and our families safe, and we will continue to work hard for you whether in-person, by phone, or by email. Please continue to reach out to us about any of your city needs! That said, we were grateful to have been able to participate in a few events over the past few months, both in-person and on zoom!
Indigenous Peoples’ Day
It is our absolute pleasure to announce that Columbus Day will never be celebrated in Hartford again. In September, City Council unanimously voted in favor of our resolution to officially recognize Indigenous Peoples’ Day. Our resolution was first introduced last year, but some of our Council Colleagues requested a task force to receive community input about how Hartford residents think the holiday should be recognized. We were happy to see that most Hartford residents agreed with us, and we thank Councilman Nick Lebron and Councilwoman Marilyn Rossetti for their hard work engaging the community on this issue.
The December Sixth Project
Councilwoman Bermudez, along with a committee comprising Hartford educators, students, and alumni, created the December Sixth Essay contest for Hartford students to reflect on the 13th amendment and its legacy in our society. With the deadline having just passed, our judges are now working hard to review the many entries in both written and visual art categories, so keep an eye out for updates after the new year!
The December Sixth Project is currently fundraising to send the winning students to Washington D.C. If you would like to contribute, you can venmo @DecemberSixthProject or write a check out to: BSL Educational Fund Inc. with the subject line “December Sixth Essay Contest” and mail it to PO BOX 891, Hartford, CT, 06143-0891
As you may have heard, the State of CT has a program in place called UniteCT to help tenants who are facing eviction due to unpaid rent. This past fall, advocates from the CT Fair Housing Center approached our Councilmembers to let them know that there had been recurring problems with landlords who tried to evict tenants with unpaid rent before first applying to the program, which they are legally required to do. With help from the CT Fair Housing Center and other Hartford residents who spoke up about the issue, our team put together and passed a resolution calling for all Hartford-based landlords to respect the law and accept UniteCT funds. You can find the resolution below.
Zion St. Mural
Our team has been working closely with community leaders in Frog Hollow and Behind The Rocks to develop an idea for a mural on the retaining wall at the corner of Zion and Summit Streets, under Zion Hill Cemetery. Our team is currently working hard to collect input from the community through canvassing (pictured below) and a digital survey – so if you live in the area make sure to fill it out here!
In The News
9/16/21 Fox 61 – Gaby Molina
“Rocky Hill leaders circulate petition calling for special session on car break-ins and thefts”
9/24/21 La Voz Hispana – Elvis Tejada
9/29/21 NBC Connecticut – Dominique Moody
10/6/21 Hartford Courant – Rebecca Lurye
“Hartford police begin using drones to track stolen cars and ATVs, search for missing people, and more”
11/23/21 Hartford Courant – Rebecca Lurye
“Hartford city council member Wildaliz Bermudez resigns, names likely Working Families Party replacement”
11/26/21 Fox61/CT En Vivo – Cathy Montano
12/16/21 Access TV – Morning Talk LIVE with J. Stan McCauley