District 6 Councilmember khalid kamau held a press conference today to announce his bid for Mayor of South Fulton. The election will take place November 2021.
He said if elected Mayor, he would have the opportunity to set the agenda for the city. He told the group gathered for the event that his goal is to improve the lives of Black people.
“Black people deserve to be free from economic exploitation, environmental racism, from institutional forces that drive the disparities we see in our communities and everything from health to educational outcomes,” he said.
Councilmember khalid said the film Black Panther has inspired him to look at every tax dollar and every city policy and ask, “how does this improve the lives of Black people as a whole?”
He remarked that South Fulton could and should be the model for Black health interventions during the pandemic, policies that end the environmental racism that zones Black neighborhoods as dumping grounds, school interventions and wealth building with African nations.
Councilmember khalid’s announcement comes on the heels of a four to three vote to increase South Fulton’s millage rate by .500 mills over the projected rollback rate. He voted against the measure, and expressed his displeasure over increasing property taxes during a recession.
“I am going to spend the next 400 days talking about how we build a government that addresses 400 years of previous government exploitation and abuse of Black people, 400 years of governments that have been engineered to oppress the people who make up 90 percent of this city,” he said.
Councilmember khalid is often quoted saying that the City of South Fulton is the “Blackest city in America.” A member of the LGBT community, the Councilmember said that he’s challenging South Fulton to “come out of the closet” and embrace the moniker.
Councilmember khalid was joined by DeKalb Super 6 Commissioner-elect Ted Terry and South Fulton Councilmember Mark Baker, among others, for the announcement. They gathered in front of Councilmember khalid’s former childhood home in the Old National area in the district he currently represents.
Before being elected to office, Councilmember khalid helped organize the Atlanta chapter of Black Lives Matter and served as a Field Organizer for the Georgia House Democratic Caucus. In 2016, he was elected as an At-Large Delegate to the Democratic National Convention. He is the former chair of the Metro Atlanta Democratic Socialists of America Executive Committee.
Editorial Note: Councilmember khalid prefers the lower-cased spelling of his name in the Yoruba African tradition emphasizing the community over the individual.