Kenyatta Johnson

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Kenyatta Johnson
Kenyatta Johnon.jpg
Member of the Philadelphia City Council from the 2nd District
Incumbent
Assumed office
January 2, 2012
Preceded by Anna Verna
Member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives
from the 186th district
In office
January 6, 2009[1] – January 2, 2012
Preceded by Harold James
Succeeded by Harold James
Personal details
Political party Democratic
Website http://phlcouncil.com/council-members/councilman-kenyatta-johnson-2nd-district/kenyatta-johnson-biography/

Kenyatta Johnson is a Democratic member of the Philadelphia City Council. He also served in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives from the 186th District.[2] He represents the 2nd District, which covers parts of Center City, South and Southwest Philadelphia and also includes the stadium area, Philadelphia International Airport, the Navy Yard and the Eastwick, Grays Ferry, Hawthorne and Point Breeze neighborhoods.[3]

Early life and education[edit]

Johnson is a product of Philadelphia Public Schools and has lived in Point Breeze, Philadelphia his whole life. He holds a Bachelor of Arts from Mansfield University of Pennsylvania and a Master's degree in Government Administration from the Fels Institute of Government at the University of Pennsylvania.[citation needed]

Politics[edit]

Johnson, the youngest member of City Council, founded Peace Not Guns after the murder of his cousin. He has worked since 1998 to end gun violence and prevent gun violence through education and programs created to give children an alternative to the streets. His activism led to a successful run for the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. He served as State Representative for the 186th Legislative District from 2009 until 2012 when he took the oath of office for City Council. He was a senate staffer for six years before running for the House of Representatives. [4]

Johnson is a former volunteer for AmeriCorps which is the national service organization that allows citizens to serve their communities. He was also a founding staff member of City Year, the non-profit AmeriCorps organization whose primary goal is to build advocacy through service.

Issues[edit]

Lower taxes and affordable neighborhoods[edit]

Johnson claims to want to create neighborhoods that are safe, clean, and provide quality education. He works to promote "smart development" in the 2nd District. This means creating affordable, workforce, and market rate housing. He has worked on the Longtime Owner Occupancy Program to ensure that residents were not priced out of their homes in the 2nd District. He has continued his work by expanding the LOOP program to those who received abatements and equitable ownership of their property.[citation needed]

Education[edit]

Johnson has repeatedly spoken in Harrisburg on behalf of Philadelphia students and parents for proper school funding. He is a proponent of a fair funding formula to ensure Philadelphia schools get funding.[citation needed] In Philadelphia, Johnson fought the closing high-performing Edwin M. Stanton School. He also works closely to develop and aid “Friends Of” groups, so that the communities which surround our neighborhood schools are invested in their success. Johnson has worked to get parents, teachers, and community members involved in programs and initiatives to change the climate of Bartram High School, in Southwest Philadelphia, in response to student violence against teachers.[citation needed]

Strengthening the neighborhood[edit]

Johnson has delivered more than $3 million in investments in public parks and rec centers in order to create and protect green space for children and families.[citation needed] This included the repair and re-launch of FDR Park playground, delivering $100,000 to repair damage caused by vandals. As stated on his council website, he believes that everyone deserves a safe, clean, and beautiful place to play in their community. Improving public space provides a variety of opportunities for children.[citation needed]

Gun violence prevention[edit]

Thus far in council, Johnson has outlawed the sale of 3D printed firearms and realistic toy guns. He has raised awareness about the dangers of BB guns being sold to children in District 2 and increased the fine for having or selling BB guns. Johnson also fought for the restoration of $3 million in funding for the city’s only abuse shelter – allowing it to add 100 more beds for victims of domestic violence.[citation needed]

References[edit]

External links[edit]