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|About||I'm Rafael Velasquez and I'm a Miami Beach progressive community activist.|
It's a Comeback Story...
Today, I want to share very special news with you. After consulting with my family and closest friends, I decided to take on this new challenge in my life and have filed my candidacy for Miami Beach Commission yesterday! It certainly was not an easy decision, but I believe that we live in crucial times, in which it is important for all of us, more than ever, to speak up and stand up for our community! I hope that with your help and support, we can protect our people and make a lasting positive difference for Miami Beach!
Some of you may not know this, but I have been active in my community and in politics since 1999, when I first started working as a 26-year young organizer for Southwest Voter Registration in Los Angeles, CA. In 2000, I became a volunteer attorney for the Gore campaign and since then have volunteered with many other local and national campaigns. In 2001, I returned to Miami Beach and in 2002, I ran as the Democratic Nominee for State Representative, in District 107. Over the years, I have also served as a Guardian ad Litem for abused and neglected children, a big brother in the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Miami, and a pro-bono attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union and the Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center.
I am running for office now, because I believe that we can’t remain silent in this current era of rising hate, fear, racism, anti-semitism, xenophobia, and bigotry. We need to stand up and fight for all of our people at every level of government. I also know that Miami Beach has very particular issues that need to be dealt with competently and ethically like: traffic, sea-level rise, overdevelopment, littering and pollution, homelessness, short-term rental restrictions, local crime and public safety, education, and others. Considering, that I have lived in Miami Beach, for about 15 years since 1995, I can feel our City, and love it very much! It’s for this reason also that I will always represent its