Erin Darling

Key Facts

Party N/A; nonpartisan election
Status Challenger

Background

Erin Darling graduated from UC Berkeley School of Law and later returned to his hometown of Venice to represent low-income tenants facing eviction and homelessness during the Great Recession. He went to Public Counsel, where he represented general relief recipients and the United Farm Workers. Darling was also a deputy deferral public defender for the central district of California before becoming a civil rights lawyer in private practice [2, 3].

Key Issues

Housing

Darling wants to strengthen renter protections and the Rent Stabilization Ordinance, and enact a right-to-counsel so that tenants facing eviction have a lawyer when they go to court. He wants rapid rehousing for those in encampments by identifying housing units, providing assistance with rent and move-in, and offering sustained case management, including mental health and drug treatment services. He puts a focus on assisting the newly homeless because he argues that many agencies do not offer services until someone has been homeless for over a year.

Darling wants to speed up the creation of permanent supportive housing. Darling supports the United to House LA Initiative and policies such as inclusionary zoning, a vacancy tax, by-right for non-profit affordable housing providers, and coordination amongst social service agencies to help transition people from shelters into permanent housing. Darling supports shifting away from the district-by-district patchwork approach in favor of a unified, citywide plan that marshals all possible government resources to permanently house unhoused people [2].

Environment

Darling wants to achieve 100% renewable energy by 2035. He also wants to shut down gas extraction and storage on the Westside and in Los Angeles, which means shutting down the SoCal Gas Playa Del Rey methane storage facility. He wants to limit development in the Santa Monica Mountains and supports development policies that both protect wildland-urban interface and discourage encroachment into areas prone to wildfires. He supports transitioning from fossil fuels to a sustainable economy, with examples like shifting away from decarbonizing to scaling up clean alternatives to SoCalGas. He wants to center environmental justice issues such as remediating urban oil fields and minimizing air pollution from the airport, which disproportionately affect low income residents and people of color [2]. 

Infrastructure

Darling proposes reducing the number of “super commuters” as a way to address traffic congestion and mitigate climate; to do this, he wants to construct affordable housing near transit corridors. He additionally supports the increased use of public transportation and bicycles as a viable alternative to cars. He wants to make cycling safer with protected bike lanes and make public transportation more user-friendly by dressing travel time, bus-only lanes, and free fare. He wants to establish “first mile”/ “last mile” connectivity to Metro lines with intra-Westside shuttles. He opposes the widening of the 405. Darling supports investing in infrastructure such as bright street lights, clean parks and crossworks [2].

Indigenous Rights

Darling supports acknowledging the original inhabitants of the land which is now Council District 11, the Tongva people. He is pushing for Los Angeles to adopt a policy in partnership with Indigenous peoples [2].

Public Safety

Darling wants to invest in mental healthcare, workforce development, and youth programming. He opposes diverting law enforcement resources and believes that minor traffic violations and nonviolent public disturbances do not require the intervention of armed law enforcement officers. He wants to increase Emergency Response Teams, which are trained medical and behavioral health clinicians equipped to assist individuals experiencing crises related to mental health, homelessness, and substance abuse [2].

Health Care

Darling supports universal healthcare [2].

Endorsements

Ben Allen, Senator, California’s 26th State Senate District; Isaac Bryan, Assemblymember, Los Angeles District 54; Mike Bonin, Councilmember, Los Angeles 11th District; Eunisses Hernandez, Candidate, Los Angeles 1st District; Dolores Huerta, Labor Leader and Civil Rights Activist; Alex Mohajer, President of the Stonewall Democrats; Los Angeles Times; International Longshore and Warehouse Union, Southern California District Council; California Working Families Party; LA Voice – Action; Culver City Democratic Club; Mar Vista Voice; L.A. Forward Action; Westside Young Democrats; Americans for Democratic Action; Youth Climate Strike L.A.; Streets For All; Black Los Angeles Young Democrats; Ground Game; Los Angeles County “Feel the Bern” Democratic Club; Healthcare for All – Los Angeles; Westside for Everyone; Our Revolution, Feel the Bern, LA County; Los Angeles County Public Defenders Union; Abundant Housing LA; Erin Darling for City Council 2022

Sources

1 Ballotpedia
2 Erin Darling
3 LA Times