contact Brandon Collins
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My name is Brandon Collins,
I have lived in Charlottesville my entire life (since 1973), I am a father of a child in Charlottesville City Schools. I am a musician and music teacher, a restaurant worker, personal care attendant, and activist. I have been sober for nine years. I have experienced all of the great things as well as the difficult circumstances and situations that Charlottesville has to offer. I have graduated from Charlottesville High School, attended Piedmont, lived, loved, worked for poverty wages, and organized in Charlottesville. I consider all of these as making me qualified to serve all of the residents of Charlottesville on City Council.
Some organizations I am involved with:
Charlottesville Center for Peace and Justice Board Member
Socialist Party of Central Virginia Secretary
Socialist Party USA National Committee Alternate
Industrial Workers of the World Delegate
Virginia United Against Oppression Co-founder
Cville Workers Action Network Co-founder
… and actively involved in:
Living Wage Campaign at UVA and the
Wayside Center for Popular Education
Inside and out of these organizations I have worked towards ending wars and occupations, ending poverty, ending racism, supported workers rights, supported single payer health care, supported immigrants rights, supported GLBTQ rights, supported women’s rights, supported responsible ecology, and advocated for artistic freedom and self expression. I have approached these issues actively and wholeheartedly.
I recently was deeply involved in the effort to stop anti-immigrant and anti-worker bills in the General Assembly (and we did it!). I submitted a resolution to City Council opposing that legislation and they accepted and passed the resolution unanimously. I was very much involved in the recent campaign to keep programming at WTJU in the hands of the announcers, and we won! I have participated in many organizing efforts centered around ending war and militarism, and played a big role in the protests surrounding the visit of war criminal John Yoo to our town, even participating in the disruption of his speaking events. I have addressed city council in public on numerous occasions particularly about the meadow creek parkway, water supply, housing, music hall zoning, and the re-bricking of the downtown mall.
I hope to make issues of poverty, homelessness, affordable housing, and unemployment a priority for the City of Charlottesville. I believe that responsible stewardship of our environment means focusing on what the earth needs, not what developers want. I believe that racism and inequality are still two of the biggest problems that our city faces. I believe that our city officials have a duty to represent their constituents in matters of state and national importance, not just in local matters. I believe that a radical grassroots democracy is the way to make a better city and planet and I will work hard to always carry these beliefs with me if given the chance to serve the people of Charlottesville on City Council.
If you would like details please visit my “platform” page!
We live in a sick society that places profits over human needs. I firmly hold that we have to stop treating the symptoms of the illness and work to find a cure for the disease. A fundamental change needs to happen on this planet in order for humanity to survive the next 100 years, and to eliminate poverty and suffering in the present. The radical transformation of society is the ultimate goal for me as I go about organizing and engaging in activism. As a democratic socialist I believe that building a radical democracy from the ground up has to begin on the local level. I readily admit that there are many challenges to creating a Charlottesville that emphasizes cooperation over competition and that could fundamentally change how we operate as a community- Radical transformation of society is unlikely to happen solely by the actions of government. All people must begin to organize their communities and workplaces in order for a democratic socialist society to truly be created and sustained. However, I believe that local government can further this process and alleviate some of the suffering that people experience in our city. I also believe that a political campaign is great way to encourage community organizing, learn about the needs of our residents, and include some of the most ignored parts of city in the political process. The campaign is also an excellent opportunity to educate the public about the need for democracy and socialism and advocate for ideas that further those concepts.
Please contact me if you have any questions, but more importantly, please let me know what your concerns for Charlottesville are. I am willing and able to support your organizing effort in our community, whether it be in the campaign, your workplace, at home, or in the streets!