It is time to rethink how we address living space for our unhoused neighbors--the current situation is not working for them or for the city. We know that helping people get back on their feet requires stable housing, but the very first step is getting people inside to safe places--ones where they feel comfortable and secure. In addition, we will expand street outreach, addiction treatment, and harm reduction to ensure that people facing a crisis are aware of these new solutions. Bold action is required to change the trajectory of the city, and we can develop solutions that are both safe AND caring.
Safe, healthy, accessible, affordable housing is a human right. Yet a stable home has become a luxury many in Denver cannot afford. We need a bold, creative leader who will prioritize the needs of Denverites. Leslie will fight for resources to create truly affordable housing and end chronic homelessness, zoning reforms to prioritize fair housing and affordable homes for families, protections to stabilize tenants, and ways to expand permanent affordability, such as community land trusts.
Housing affordability impacts everyone, and costs are quite simply out of control in Denver right now. We need a multi-pronged approach to this crisis that ensures current renters and homeowners can afford to live here, while also ensuring that our unhoused neighbors have access to both housing and supports to help get them back on track.
Leslie has a bold vision that will combine smart urban planning with help for those struggling with mental health and addiction issues. Leslie has gotten real results - like a successful alternative policing program that deploys trained health care workers and paramedics to respond to mental health calls, and creating the innovative Caring for Denver mental health and addiction nonprofit. She will use this collaborative, bold, and innovative vision to solve Denver’s housing and homelessness problem.
Every person in Denver deserves to feel safe in their community and in this city. From our parks to our schools, and whether you’re protesting in front of the Capitol or you’re an unhoused person facing a crisis, Denver can do better. Whether it is preventing gun violence, training law enforcement, reducing car thefts, or helping people that are living on our sidewalks, we can and will make our community safer for everyone, no matter what part of town they live in.
Denver can be the safest major city in the nation. A vibrant city for all its residents demands a transformational approach to public safety. That includes ensuring that each agency in the Public Safety Department is well resourced including: Police, Firefighters, Dispatchers, Sheriffs, Community Corrections, and Youth Program services. Leslie has a proven track record of being a champion of true criminal justice reform, and will continue to fight to ensure that our system is fair and just for all people that encounter it.
Denver is more than just a city -- it’s a collection of neighborhoods. Each neighborhood is unique, with its own special character and attractions. For our neighborhoods and city to thrive, we need comprehensive planning and development processes that are accessible, efficient, and transparent.
Under Leslie’s leadership, Denver will embark upon an Urban Renaissance - a Denver where innovation and affordability thrive. We will redefine what an exceptional American city can truly be, by embracing diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging to craft a new social space where a vibrant mix of residential housing, commerce, and leisure co-exist.
Leslie sees the future of Denver’s development as one that incorporates both smart planning and community buy-in. Our city does not have room to grow in a haphazard manner. Changes to our city must ensure we protect parks & open space, eliminate food deserts, support our schools, and improve housing affordability. Denver is ready for growth that benefits everyone.
Denver’s economic development future rests on its ability to educate, train, attract and retain talent. For the first time in 20 years, more people are leaving the Denver Metro area than moving here. This is due in part to employment challenges. However, this is also due to our safety and housing affordability challenges. Leslie’s economic development platform centers on creating a safe, strong and vibrant Downtown Denver; making city government more efficient through accountability; small business advocacy and equity; and making Denver a Global Gateway City.
Leslie was endorsed by the Colorado Chamber of Commerce in 2018 and 2020 for her commitment to creating an economically vital and vibrant state. She also recently received the Iron Skillet award from the Colorado Restaurant Association for securing funding that helped restaurants stay in business during the pandemic. Leslie understands business and will ensure the Denver economy will not only survive but thrive.
Within her first 100 days, Leslie will meet with the City’s largest employers and fastest growing companies to discuss the challenges and opportunities facing their businesses. She will also partner with the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation, higher ed, and upskilling organizations to ensure we are training and educating the next workforce to meet employer and employee needs.
Read Leslie’s Full Economic Development & Small Business Plan
Denver is amazing. Clear blue skies, vibrant parks, and mountain views are part of what makes this city so special. But we’ve had some of the worst air quality days in the world in recent years, and the mountains are all too often hidden behind the smog. We have an opportunity to make Denver a truly green city, and we need a bold leader who is ready to listen and implement bold solutions.
Climate change and air quality issues are deeply linked, and the people of Denver are negatively impacted by both. We’ve all experienced the dreaded brown cloud, and pollution is causing ill health effects, especially in our most vulnerable communities.
Leslie will focus on improving air quality and reducing carbon emissions, all while ensuring that communities of Color are not disproportionately impacted by these changes. Denver is ready for a breath of fresh air.
Great transportation options are the lifeblood of great cities, and Denver can do better. From today’s traffic jams, sketchy intersections and lack of safe bike lanes, it's clear that getting around our city is hard and the amount of cars creating traffic only adds to our pollution and climate problems
Leslie isn’t afraid of tough challenges, and will take a comprehensive approach to revamping our city’s transportation system so people can move around easily and safely. A safe, balanced, and accessible transportation system also means a stronger economy.
Everyone wins when our city is connected.
Denver has many incredible hospitals and health care facilities. However, people are still falling through the cracks. Access to health care must be robust and equitable. This includes treatment for mental health and addiction services. Leslie will focus on ensuring public physical and mental health care access is ubiquitous across the city and for every demographic group. Denver thrives when we all can get the care we need.
Denver students, teachers, and families deserve an education system that works for them and provides the support they need to succeed and thrive. Our schools are facing upheaval and uncertainty, and we need a leader who is ready to bring people together to best serve our kids. Leslie has a proven track record of putting people over politics to get results, and she will prioritize collaboration and community involvement to move our schools forward.
Every parent wants a quality education for their children, and time and time again Denver voters choose to support our public schools. Despite this, there is much discontent among parents and community members whenever decisions are made.
Leslie will use her leadership style of collaboration and community involvement to put people over politics and help move forward a positive agenda for the City of Denver that makes sure that all of our voices are heard.
Leslie has long been a strong supporter of the creative community in Denver including backing the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA), supporting local musicians, and finding solutions to unique mental health and financial problems facing our artistic community.
For Denver to reach its full potential, Leslie will foster an already thriving culture by investing in the arts and ensuring that creatives have incentives to live and work here. She will create spaces for artists to thrive and make sure they can afford a place to live as part of our community. Denver is ready for an even more robust arts and cultural community that reflects the unique spirit of our neighborhoods and city.
Denver is strong because of the people who make up the city. Whether you’re a seventh-generation Denverite, a transplant from elsewhere in the country, or a migrant newly arrived in the country and city. We will continue striving to be a city that welcomes everyone and ensures that every Denverite can thrive here.