Let me start by thanking the Richmond Review for giving me the opportunity to write a column for our local paper. I have lived in Inner Richmond for 15 years now. Some of the best and worst moments in my life, either personally or professionally thus far, happened in San Francisco.
On Nov. 3, 2018 I asked my now-fiancé Priya to marry me. We were actually set to be married this month but, because of COVID-19, we decided to postpone our wedding.
When I was diagnosed with kidney failure five years ago at age 33 due to a still unknown genetic disorder, it completely tore my life apart. My dreams of getting married to the woman I love, and going back to school to get my law degree so that I could pursue a career as an advocate for all people who suffer from illness were in doubt. Luckily, as I sit here writing this column, I can state with profound gratitude and appreciation that I received a kidney transplant from an altruistic donor on Feb. 1.
With my second chance at life I looked at my district and rather than complain, I decided to take action and run for a seat on the SF Board of Supervisors to represent District 1 as a first-time candidate. After going to City Hall and taking the oath to uphold the office that I am seeking, I immediately went out in my neighborhood to secure the 30 signatures I needed to get my name on the ballot for the November election.
Some who read this might ask why I started my campaign in June. It took me about four months to recover from the kidney transplant. I have always been someone who understands the importance of voting in our national, statewide and local elections since I was 18 years old. What makes this a unique time to run for office is that we are dealing with the global COVID-19 pandemic which prompted the City of San Francisco, led by Mayor London Breed, to shut down completely starting in March.
Normally during a local Board of Supervisors election in San Francisco, you go out to listen to and speak with potential voters. You also have face-to-face debates with your fellow candidates and are able to state your positions on key issues, like homelessness, dirty streets and rising housing costs.
All of our debates/forums during this election are via Zoom, which is completely understandable given the current circumstances. What I do not understand is how a candidate can continue to speak about all these endorsements and government experience they have, without a single person asking what specific legislation that person helped to write. Just like I was asked repeatedly why I do not support defunding the police. I have been consistent in my stance that we do not need to defund the police, but push for systemic change. I am speaking based on my own life experiences and what I see in my District 1 neighborhood.
Property crime and theft are up in our neighborhood, and our police department does not have the resources it needs to respond to these important issues in a timely manner. There are so many things to fix in District 1 that call for a new type of leadership. There are several candidates who are running that I have a lot of respect for and most would make an excellent District 1 supervisor. I happen to think that I would be best suited to lead the Richmond and District 1 as a whole into the future.
For more information, visit www.voteandrewmajalya.com, email oxydrew24@.com or call (415) 373-7565.
Link to list of candidates HERE.