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AERION ABNEY

Announces campaign for state representative

When you think of Aerion Andrew Abney, you should think of a “proven visionary and strategic leader that has a strong history and passion for building communities.”

Abney, in an exclusive interview with the New Pittsburgh Courier, Nov. 20, also said he has “developed a reputation built on quality, integrity and uncompromising ethics.”

“I chose to run again because I believe that democracy isn’t meant to be passive, it demands action.”

AERION ABNEY

The Pitt graduate, who also holds a Master’s degree in Social Work, is best known around these parts as an integral part of the POISE Foundation, of which he’s a former program officer. He’s the founder of the USSIE Summer Games, and currently serves on the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County’s My Brother’s Keeper taskforce.

Now, he wants to also be known as Pennsylvania state representative.

On Nov. 20, Abney officially announced his campaign for state representative in the 19th District, which includes primarily the Hill District, many parts of the North Side including his home, Manchester, and Downtown Pittsburgh.

“As a resident of the district, I see the daily challenges—lack of employment opportunities, struggling schools, rising housing costs, strained public safety relationships, and other disparities that impact residents in our communities,” Abney said in a release announcing his campaign. “Too many of our seniors and families do not have the support and services they need to thrive and our communities are getting left behind. We cannot continue down this path—the time has come to raise expectations and demand better leadership.”

AERION ABNEY

State Rep. Jake Wheatley Jr. is the current legislator of the 19th District, currently serving his eighth term at the helm.

“I will promote the issues of the people and be a true advocate in Harrisburg and the City of Pittsburgh to change the realities of struggle for residents. Unfortunately, the current official is unaccountable to his constituents and has abdicated his responsibilities,” Abney told the New Pittsburgh Courier exclusively. “It is not the type of representation the district needs or deserves; we all deserve better. My actions have always and will continue to show people that I am present and active in the community.”

“I will promote the issues of the people and be a true advocate in Harrisburg and the City of Pittsburgh to change the realities of struggle for residents. Unfortunately, the current official is unaccountable to his constituents and has abdicated his responsibilities.” — AERION ABNEY

Abney, in announcing his campaign, said he supports strengthening communities through implementing anti-displacement housing strategies, providing better funding for schools and career training programs, and promoting economic development in all areas of the district. Abney released a video on his Facebook page promoting the run for state representative, at 10:19 a.m., Nov. 20—the “19” representing the district Abney ultimately wants to represent. And it isn’t his first rodeo in the political arena. Abney attempted a run at the 19th District seat in 2016, but dropped out of the race after not receiving the Democratic endorsement before the Primary Election.

That year, Rep. Wheatley defeated Jessica Wolfe by a margin of 61 to 38 percent in the Primary Election, on his way to another term in office. Thus, what makes Abney, who is months shy of birthday No. 30, believe 2018 will be his year?

“I chose to run again because I believe that democracy isn’t meant to be passive, it demands action,” Abney told the New Pittsburgh Courier. “It is important that we challenge the status quo because it has fallen below expectations and our neighborhoods and families continue to suffer.”

 

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