Claire Syrett represents Ward 7 on the Eugene City Council. She is a proven leader and effective advocate for progressive issues. Her fair-minded, fact-based approach to tackling tough issues means she can work effectively with people of diverse opinions to move our city forward in a positive direction. Claire stands strong on her principles and works from her core values of equality, compassion and community in her role representing Ward 7 and the city of Eugene.
Claire represents one of the most diverse wards in the city of Eugene. Ranging from downtown to the northern edges of the city boundaries, this ward includes the Trainsong, Whiteaker, River Road and Santa Clara neighborhoods; each one having its own unique character and needs.
Claire’s leadership on the council includes championing the successful Parks and Open Spaces levy and bond and road repair bond as well as moving the council to adopt a series of resolutions and ordinances to ensure that Eugene residents were able to access city services and feel welcome and safe regardless of the federal immigration status. Claire has also lead the way in seeking alternative legal camping sites for those without shelter and securing a down payment of $1 million towards a public shelter (see below.) In 2015 Claire helped move the city council to adopt a paid sick leave ordinance that helped pave the way for a state-wide law providing paid sick time to workers for the first time in Oregon’s history.
What's Happening at City Hall
The legal roadblocks to the city and county exchanging land were removed at the end of 2018 creating a path forward for the city of Eugene to build a new city hall on lot across from the Parks Blocks downtown (currently referred to as the butterfly lot.) Once the land swap is finalized, the city can begin the work to build our new city hall. Included in this effort will be the opportunity for the community to create a Town Square that includes improvements to the Parks Blocks and the creation of a year-round farmers market facility for the Lane County Farmers Market. Our community can look forward to seeing a more accessible and welcoming city hall for all Eugene residents.
City and County Partnership to Address Homeless Crises
The city and county are ready to embark on an cooperative effort that if successful should result in a significant reduction in the number of unhoused people in our community. By implementing the recommendations provided by the Technical Assistance Collaborative report we could eliminate the need for temporary emergency shelter options such as the rest stops and Dusk to Dawn programs within three years as well as reducing the overall number of people staying on the streets without shelter. The recommendations include building a low-barrier public shelter to house 50 - 75 people mainly single adults who currently lack other options. I am proud to have lead the effort at the Eugene Budget committee to secure an investment of $1 million dollars towards the building of this shelter.
Homelessness is a problem with causes beyond the scope of our city government to address but the daily affect is felt in our parks and neighborhoods. We must find places to shelter those without housing, if we don't want them living in our wetlands and parks. But the city faces strong protests in almost every instance when a site to provide housing for those without it is considered. How we move forward, as a community, is the real question here. We must find some consensus on what we will support as a community and move forward towards both short term and long term solutions.