TOP Sees Clear Blue Skies Ahead for Airport Expansion
Texas Organizing Project applauds Mayor Parker and City Council for looking out for Houstonians by ensuring local hiring will take place when Hobby Airport expands. “People in Houston will benefit from jobs and training programs, so I'm glad we're moving forward with the expansion,” said Steven Cooper, a neighborhood resident near Hobby Airport. “In the past we've often heard about jobs that were supposedly coming to our communities that haven’t come to fruition. It's encouraging to see that this time around it's going to be different," Cooper said. "With 'Hire Houston First,' local residents will get a chance at good paying jobs," added Cooper.
For weeks leading up to the vote on whether or not to expand Houston's first airport, Texas Organizing Project (TOP) knocked on thousands of doors in Southeast Houston informing and engaging residents in the debate that otherwise had been overshadowed by corporate lobbyists. On May 6th at a community meeting organized by TOP, a straw poll was conducted about the potential Hobby Airport expansion. Among the results, 79% of community members supported the idea of Hobby Airport expansion, but wanted solid commitments from the City for local hiring and training. Today, they got what they’d asked for: a commitment to put Houston workers first.
“I’m encouraged by hundreds in our neighborhoods who organized and spoke out about their concerns-- we were heard. We need to continue to stay engaged on this and other issues that directly impact us. I applaud the City’s leadership for listening to the residents and ensuring a commitment to local hiring when Hobby expands. "This morning, Houston won,” said TOP Board Member Akua Fayette from South Park reflecting on the "Hire Houston First" agreement.