A newly formed coalition calling itself “Just Mobile” released its platform at a press conference Tuesday ahead of the Aug. 22 municipal elections.

In a statement, the coalition asked voters to elect mayoral and City Council candidates who help implement a “just” agenda that “best serves the needs of Mobilians, with fairness, equity and transparency to all.”

The coalition’s comments at Tuesday’s media event touched on a number of local, state and national political issues including a living wage for all, equitable funding for parks, full restoration of the city’s public transit system, the right to quality health care and others.

Lanita Kharel, executive director of AIDS Alabama South, asked that city funding for her organization be re-established, as Mobile County has the highest rate of new HIV cases in the state.
Antonie Maybin, a local transit union representative, said the reinstatement of WAVE routes to Prichard and Mobile County cut last year is the “only way the city will be able to grow.”

On the economy, Rev. Tony Allgood, of the Inner City Mission, said the group is advocating for a living wage to help pull people out of the “working poor” classification and help get them off of entitlement programs.

Vicki Howell, with the Mobile County NAACP, said the group wanted the city’s contract process open to wider range of small business. She specifically mentioned minority-owned businesses.

As part of the Zoghby Act, the law governing the city’s current mayor-council form of government, city contractors must make a best effort to give 15 percent of a contract to a disadvantaged business enterprise. Councilors have helped to make sure those standards have been met, and Mayor Sandy Stimpson has hired Archnique Kidd as supplier diversity manager.

The Just Mobile platform also calls for local reform on environmental and education issues, law enforcement, immigration and health care.