Climate activist launches protest write-in campaign for mayor
by Anastasia Hufham, Yale Daily News
Environmental activist urges New Haven residents to vote for the land in the city’s mayoral race.
Gabriela Campos, a lifelong environmental activist, has joined New Haven’s mayoral race as a write-in candidate, urging residents to vote for “The Land for Mayor” in protest of the city’s response to the Tweed New Haven Airport expansion and other environmental issues.
Campos’ campaign focuses on respect for the environment and New Haven neighborhoods. She proposes “listening circles” in each neighborhood, wherein heads of city departments would meet with community members on a regular basis to hear concerns and confront other issues. Her proposed agenda also emphasizes the need for food forests — similar to robust community gardens — sustainable architecture, pedestrian-friendly infrastructure, ranked-choice voting and a coastal-resiliency plan in New Haven.
“I don’t even want people to vote for me, just to vote in protest,” Campos said. “Write in ‘the land.’ If we care for the land, our needs are met. If there are enough of us who vote for the land, they’ll have to listen.”
Campos grew up in Peru, where her environmental activism began. She remembers scolding a boy in her neighborhood for hurting caterpillars and recalls her family’s emphasis on respecting the earth. Her family immigrated to the United States in the 1980s, first to California and then to Connecticut.
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