Why I'm running for Des Moines City Council

RJ Miller is an advocate, activist, and executive director of Greater Opportunities Inc, a Des Moines-based nonprofit. He was an independent candidate for the Iowa House in 2022.

I’m running for the at-large Des Moines City Council seat now held by Carl Voss, because I believe the council needs more diversity and more council members who come from a grassroots background, for and from the people they represent.

I’m running because our city needs real leadership. Des Moines needs someone who will unify and truly fight for the people’s best interests. Residents deserve someone who will fight against gentrification, redlining, and eminent domain. More important, the city deserves an anti-sellout, anti-establishment councilman.

My top issues:

I will be fighting for affordable housing, to help eliminate barriers for low-income neighborhoods and to reduce homelessness.

I will be fighting for racial justice, to make sure people of color have equal opportunities and self-determination. With diversity, equity, and inclusion, we can create a better city for all and not just a select few.

I believe we should reimagine public safety to empower communities. The current model isn’t working for Iowans. I believe in community control over police; the police should be accountable to the citizens whom they serve and protect. Police should live in the communities that they patrol, because it can be a disservice to not have a community cultural understanding of the neighborhoods where they work.

I believe the City of Des Moines should allow three candidates to run per police district. Those elected would have oversight of police help shape better public safety, and policies that would benefit the community.

The community should also have a say in what kind of training police get and advocate for better, more advanced training if need be. 

I will fight for the city to invest in underserved neighborhoods, and specifically invest in the youth, through social programs, community resource centers, and similar projects.

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Top photo of RJ Miller provided by the author and published with permission.

About the Author(s)

RJ Miller