Blas Jacob Cabrera

on the issues...

Jay on the Issues
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Jacob’s L.I.F.E.

Blas Jacob Cabrera (Jay)  Health / Wellness Coach   Age: 28

Dear City of Santa Cruz Citizens,

I am committed to total community transformation that support our society with sustainability, peace, equal rights, cultural empowerment, and wellness - towards evolving our humanity.

I commit to the rigorous task as a public servant where I have been active in Santa Cruz for the past 10 years.  My primary goal is to collectively facilitate a new community vision that anyone can participate.  I actively collaborate between community members such as students, entrepreneurs, businesses, non-profit organizations, and even tourists to a better downtown Santa Cruz.  Let’s make a safe mecca for healing with clean tiled sidewalks, and a car free plaza that encourages prosperity. 

I am dedicated to providing individual life support services accessible to everyone for wellness and healing classes, business and community organizations, as well as green health care especially in the area of physical and mental health.  Santa Cruz citizens need new options and opportunities to uplift our lives and our planet.

With love and hope,


For more info on Jay:

Following is lots of

Questions & Answers

Email Jay to ask your own

1.  What convinced you to run for Santa Cruz City Council?

I have decided to run for public office for the rest of my life.  I am starting at the local level because that seems most pertinent.  I have lived in Santa Cruz for 10 years, and am dedicated to supporting our local communities to evolve and transform to meet the needs of future generations and to become the leader across california for sustainability, wellness, and education.  I have seen, growing up as a young adult, our governance systems become increasingly inept at dealing with the complex lifestyles we live in the 21st century.  I have a vision that can evolve our governance structures to work and function in balance with everyday life and business.  I am not only going to say how I think government should function, but also walk my talk by being willing to be a public servant in government because I know that government can again one day work the way it should, for and by the people.

  2.  How many hours a week do you plan to devote to this office

       if elected?

10-20 hours +  I dedicate my life to community and grass roots organizing.  I do networking outreach and education on community transformation.  I see the work I do now no different than what we need in our government to better represent our communities.  Therefore, even though I may be putting 10-20 hours into being at government meetings and answering questions etc... I will still be putting in 60 hour weeks in supporting our communities as I have been doing for many years, all unpaid.

  3.  What is your stand on the death penalty, both practically and


An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.  No death penalty.  How a bout actual healing and helping people evolve.  I believe even if you are on the death penalty, you should still have rights, equal rights for all, everyone should be able to vote.  It is too expensive, it doesn't persuade people committing horrible crimes any more than life in prison.

  4.  Do you think UCSC is paying a fair share of the costs it

       creates  to the City of Santa Cruz?  If not, what would you do      

       to change the situation?

No.  With the new legal agreements, the University has agreed to step up its side of covering costs, but I do believe that there is still more work to be done.  I always say that it takes two to tango, and my main focuses on this issue would be to ensure agreement on open communication between the city leadership and the UC administration so that plans can be enacted to have interdependent planning processes and clearer understanding on the problems that exists.  Secondly I feel that the city needs to work with the state legislature to give a balance of power with local communities that have to take on the burden of State campuses across california.

  5.  How do you feel about restoration of the San Lorenzo River-

       front and the transparency of the litigation with the Seaside    


I feel that the restoration of the San Lorenzo River and protecting the bay and the ocean need to be top priorities.  Only by protecting our waterways, will we be able to protect our ecosystems and life support systems of this planet.    I believe in full transparency, and more important community and neighborhood involvement.  I feel the city should work together with the country and create a full septic system educational program and requrie all inhabitants in the Santa Cruz mountains with septic systems to attend these classes or be fined.  All septic systems should be in full operational order and there is no excuse for leaking contaminated water into the river even if subsidies are necessary.

  6.  Santa Cruz needs a central park/meeting place/zocolo.  Do

       you support closure of Pacific Avenue to create a more

       public friendly gathering space?

This is actually one of my main points of my platform.  You can read my statement as it describes closing off part of pacific avenue to create a plaza of prosperity.  I feel the intersection in front of Cinema 9 is a good place to start as the traffic just ends there in all directions.

  7.  How would you deal with the issue of racial profiling by

       Santa Cruz City police?  Homeless profiling?

Obviously the santa cruz police need to be educated about discrimination, prejudice, and non-judgement based on peoples personalities.  They also could use some skills in transformative and non-violent communications.  More importantly, I believe we need a community support officers dressed in green or some friendly color, that are trained specifically for communication and helping deal with conflicts on the streets and in the neighborhoods, specifically to avoid calling the police.  I believe that a first level direct involvement of someone trained to help reduce conflict and aggression using communication and mediation skills along with healing and a healthy lifestyle, could alleviate the need for first responding cops that many times can escalate the conflict and stop or break down communication that makes things worse over the long run.

  8.  On a scale of one to ten, how important is the issue that all

       projects  approved by the City of Santa Cruz be constructed

       and operated by union labor and local labor?  What can be

       done to further this issue?

9, everything should be done to have local and union labor.  Certain timely construction might need to be done by sub-contractors that don't meet that criteria.   More public oversight and transparency of contracts.

  9.  Would you support a rights based city ordinance that

       prohibits the use of pesticides on anyones property or

       person without their explicit consent?

Yes absolutely.  We need to have toxic free community as much as possible.  There should be certain pesticides that people should be able to not have in their entire community, let alone just their property.

10.  Would you support an ordinance such as Arcata is consider

         ing which reads “No person who is employed by or an agent of the United States government shall, within the City of Arcata, in the execution of his or her job duties, recruit, initiate contact with for the purpose of recruiting, or promote the future enlistment of any person under the age of eighteen into any branch of the United States Armed Forces.”

Yes, and for people interested in getting involved, there should be accessible and clear education on the benefits and costs of joining the armed forces.  Many times recruitment is one-sided, and there needs to be a broader education as this affects peoples futures quite dramatically.  This education needs to be available for any minor interested in joining the armed forces so they receive a balanced education unto what they would be getting themselves into.


1.How do you balance the need for sustainable economic growth and incubation of new businesses with the desire to preserve neighborhood character? What are your guidelines to judge approving new development? 

Sustainable Economic growth requires support for local and neighborhood level economies, new market basis on Wellness and healing, and initiating more collaborative models of marketing including collective outreach in the San Francisco Bay Area for Santa Cruz Services.Neighborhoods should be empowered to develop the visions for their own local place of business and the city should support healing and wellness activities as a great new business opportunity for the city with holistic medicine increasing in popular demand and Santa Cruz having a many resources accessible to the Bay Area.   New developments are complicated and have to be weighed out in detail with each proposal.  I feel the most important criteria is the cost and benefits for the local neighboorshoood that the development would be in.  If a neighborhood feels good about it, then it should move forward, the city can provide benefits and mitigations to encourage the local neighborhood to take on a project that might have some negative impacts, but in the end it should be up to the neighborhood to approve such developments in communication with the City Council.

2. Given the steady growth of the population, how do you realign public transit systems and traffic patterns to increase circulation of goods and services while protecting the environment?

Public Transportation should be given priority so that the people can get to the goods and services provided by private business.  Traffic patterns involving the circulation of goods and services are inherently not public, and take less precedence over public transit.  For example I would love to see some of Pacific Avenue closed off to cars, which would stop all private transportation and only allow for public transportation of vehicular traffic on the part that was closed down, but for the circulation of goods and services, you would allow business service trucks into the plaza’s and closed down pedestrian streets early in the mornings during specific hours.  The best way to protect the environment is to not allow single fragmented projects on transportation, but instead to always look at all modalities of transportation expansion within a comprehensive sustainable transportation plan.

3.What steps should the City take in assessing support for social services and how should it assess accountability for these expenditures?

The city should be mandated to always be conducting ongoing assessments for not only its social services but all of its programs.  There is a function of assessing assessments that requires an on-going committee to be formed and make sure that all the assessments getting done are being used and the information generated is getting to the right places at the right times for improvements of the programs.  The assessment should be mandatory, the question should really be how are we actually going to improve our social services?  There needs to be more innovation and accessibility to the services offered with back up plans, self help support, and community and neighborhood support for sharing and asking for help as a citizen.  If and when the government fails the people, the people still need to be empowered to support themselves.

4.What experience do you have in engaging young people in civic life in Santa Cruz? In what ways would you make sure young people have a voice in City affairs?

As a young person I am very engaging and active person, high above the average student or youth.  People thank me every week for my inspiring and committed personality to working for people’s health and wellness, and the health and wellness of our planet.  I engage youth to take action, start businesses, get healthy and well, do classes, activities, or meetings, start organizations, non-profits and more.  I advise students up at UCSC regularly within the sustainability movement and student government.  My main focus is a youth and student lead and run community center downtown that I call the Wellness Community Transformation Center at 903 Pacific Ave #300/302.  I want to see the community center be a hub for student and youth organizing downtown and help support a collaboration between students at Cabrillo and UCSC working directly with the city and communities of Santa Cruz.

5.What is your current thinking on the state of the downtown area? What steps will you take to help this area realize its full economic and social potential?

The downtown area needs help and is DIRTY.  It is unacceptable that the street is cleaner than the sidewalks.  We need to clean the sidewalks regularly with water and salt, and businesses should not be allowed to not clearn their section of the sidewalk, instead all businesses should be taxed a pacific avenue cleaning fee, and the city should ensure the cleaning is done over the entire street.  Additional I want to establish a Plaza of Prosperity on Pacific Avenue on the intersection in front of the Cinema 9 theatre.  By closing off Pacific Avenue for that bottled-necked intersection and creating space for pedestrians it will liven up downtown increasing its attraction.


1. Please choose which statement reflects your position:

Yes, I support the FOLF stand to restore the traditional off-leash recreation policies at LFSB. I commit to working with the city, county and state to help achieve this goal.

Comments: (please feel free to add any comments)

I believe that the city council and the mayor does have a significant role in working with the State parks in purchasing the land and ensuring that the park is accessible and strategically aligned with the interests of the community using the park.

2. If elected, will you vote to complete the City’s proposed acquisition of Its Beach from the State of California in order to restore off-leash recreation at Its Beach?



Comments: (please feel free to add any comments)

3. Please specify any of your specific experiences that would make you most qualified candidate to help support and achieve the goals of FOLF (e.g., city, county and state government, parks and land use issues, community action, government zoning, legal or budget planning):

Comments: (please feel free to add any comments)

I am very interested in open space, and having accessible space for responsible community members to bring their families including pets.  There are fewer and fewer places to have dogs off leash and anywhere that can be saved as an off-leash place is important.  As a student at UCSC I worked as the Chancellors Undergraduate Intern (CUIP) of the Natural Reserves and learned much about our relationships with state parks and other agencies.

4. Do you think it is an appropriate use of City funds to provide off-leash recreation areas?

   ____       Yes


Comments: (please feel free to add any comments)

5. If elected, will you vote to support allocation of appropriate funds to acquire Lighthouse Field from the State of California?

   ____       Yes


Comments: (please feel free to add any comments)

I believe in participatory budgeting where the neighborhoods themselves are the foundation to creating the city budget.

6. Will you take of a leadership role on the City Council to help eventually move toward a City purchase and/or operating agreement for Lighthouse Field as well as It’s Beach?

   ____       Yes

Please explain any specific plans or commitments:

7. For the off-leash recreation needs of Santa Cruz citizens, which statement best represents your position?

   ____ The City of Santa Cruz provides not enough space off-leash recreation

Comments: (please feel free to add any comments)

And unfortunately it is getting more difficult to give dogs the space to run around all over the bay area and Monterey Bays.

8. If you are committed to off-leash recreational parks, which do you consider to be the most appropriate form of park (please feel free to pick multiple and designate order 1-3 of preference)?

____ Contained dog runs with gravel or wood-chip surface within fences (such as Scotts Valley or Aptos)

____ Open Space contained areas (large grass fields or beach areas within fences)

____ Open Space shared use areas (such as Carmel Beach or Lighthouse Field prior to Nov. 2007)

Additional comments:

All of the above, we should have all of these available.  The more places to have off-leash areas the better.  Of course it is always nicest for the dogs to be able to run free in a open environment with no fences, but some people don’t feel comfortable letting their  dog run in that type of setting, so a fenced setting might allow a safe space for their dog to run when otherwise it wouldn’t have a chance at all.


1- Please tell us why you are interested (if you are) in reaching out to the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender (GLBT) community; and why you would like (if you would) the endorsement of Santa Cruz County’s grassroots progressive GLBT political organization.


Having very recently “came out” I share the experience that many people of the GLBT community face.  I believe in diversity and equal protection of the law for everyone.  The more different types of people we have in our communities, the stronger they are.

2- Please tell us about your history with the GLBT community, and your awareness of issues specific to the GLBT community.

I have been working with the GLBT community for 10 years here in Santa Cruz.  I started at UC Santa Cruz’s Merrill College, which houses the GLBT Center on campus.  Over the years I went to many events, collaborated with leaders of many organizations as a representative of the sustainability movement, and even held events myself at the GLBT Center.  I love working with Deb Abbot , the director of the GLBT center, and we have had a long history collaborating with my work on the sustainability movement on campus. 

Yet my history with the GLBT community has just begun.  Although I have always been supportive of the GLBT community and interacting with it for many years, I have only recently been able to acknowledge myself as bi-sexual over the last year, and only have come public and opened up to my family and parents since 2008.  It is all very new yet it all feels right, even though some parts are difficult.

3 - Have there been any GLBT people who've had a significant impact on your life, as role models, inspirations, mentors, friends, etc.? If so, please tell us a little bit about how they've influenced you.

Any big celebrities who were gay or bi-sexual definitely had an affect on me.   It was always interesting knowing that I wanted to be in the public light, how it would affect my image.  Luckily I am not ashamed about my “image” anymore, what’s important is focusing on my own life.  Elton John is a huge celebrity and with his music made me feel so comfortable and open about his life.  He truly embodied empowerment and an image of an elegant and unusual lifestyle that included all walks of life including his sexuality.  Ellen DeGeneres is also a star when it comes to opening herself up to the world about her sexuality.  She embodies empowerment also, and a commandeering tone to allow people to understand without having to be super serious.

4 - Have you had any opportunities to address GLBT issues in the course of your community service or professional life to date (i.e., have you helped formulate corporate non-discrimination standards, worked on the board of a non-profit that developed a GLBT outreach program, etc.)? Please tell us about this work.

As a student activist, and a community leader in Santa Cruz I have attended many pride events and supported pride campaigns to a limited extent.  I definitely have been very involved in creating non-discrimination policies and standards, which did include aspects of sexuality.  Also where I live at the Chavez coop, issues of gender come up in our meetings as well as within our house politics regularly, and it is very educational for all the members involved.  I am committed and willing to support all the queer issues and create a safe space in Santa Cruz to allow people to realize that their sexuality is supported.  I am on natural quest to find balance and harmony with the earth and evolving our communities and humanity itself through our current predicaments, including education about gender being a spectrum not black or white, and ensuring equal rights to everyone.

5 - Please describe your philosophy for working with minority communities of which you are not a member and, specifically, how this will manifest itself in working with the GLBT community.

When I initially ran for and was elected as UC Santa Cruz’s Internal Vice Chair (IVC) of the Student Union Assembly for the 2003-04 school year, I was the only person running against the People of Color slate.  I snuck out a win pushing out the only black student running in the slate.  I was very intimidated and concerned about my involvement and how I would be seen as someone breaking in on the yearly slate, which had never happened before to my knowledge.  I got some great advice though, and that was play your role, and do the work, and you will be part of the team.  And that is what I did.  I was one of the best IVC’s ever, and was recognized as an important advisor with the student government from the groundwork that I set.  Most importantly for me, I was able to adapt and evolve what I had done with the sustainability movement, and transformed my focus to that of collaborating and supporting the people of color community, not from outside as a external support, but actually understanding and collaborating with the leaders of the People of Color community itself.  It took some time, but although it may have happened faster in their eyes, in my eyes within about 6 months, I truly felt that I had been completely aligned with the People of Color community, and still do feel aligned with minority communities to this day as a part of them knowing and acting on the fact that I do leverage my privilege for social transformation as a white male.

6 – Do you publicly oppose Proposition 8, the Constitutional Amendment to eliminate the freedom to marry for gay and lesbian couples? If so, how will you work to defeat it? Will you endorse the Santa Cruz County No on 8 campaign? Will you place a No on 8 logo on your campaign literature? Will you place a No on 8 logo and a link to on your campaign website?

Yes I publicly oppose proposition 8.  I am willing to do anything requested of me, that works in my schedule and timeline to help educate the public about it.   I personally endorse the Santa Cruz Country No on 8 campaign.  I am willing to place a No on 8 logo on my campaign literature as funds are available (currently I do not have funds to produce campaign literature) and on my website when I update it.

7 – If you are an incumbent, will you ask your city council to endorse the campaign to defeat Prop 8 and defend the freedom to marry for gay and lesbian couples?

I have already faced stark discrimination and separation, which has caused unnecessary agony and mental anguish.  No one should have any legal right to strip someone from their loved ones just because they are the same sex and not have rights in a legal setting at hospitals, police stations, or any other situation concerning government processes.  I want to ensure this right is available to all citizens regardless of what their family or parents believe their children’s sexuality should be based on religious or normative stereotypes.

8 - It is not unusual for a city government to have a relationship at some level, such as by providing subsidized services or access to city property, with otherwise meritorious organizations (such as the Boy Scouts and the Salvation Army) who have formal policies that discriminate against GLBT people, and a documented history of doing so. If it emerged that such a relationship existed or was proposed to exist in your jurisdiction, how would you resolve the situation?

First and foremost I would focus on the most local level, and learn who the specific people involved in any particular conflict regarding discrimination.  I would want to make sure that the people involved have access to conflict mediation and mediators as needed to work through the direct issues that affect people.  In the context of meritorious organizations, I believe that any discriminatory relationships would need to be reviewed and dealt with on a professional level.  The city should have an official policy of non-discrimination and this should extended to all of its contracts.  A contract should simply be void if it doesn’t follow the cities non-discrimination policies.  If the issue is more complicated and grandfathered, then the issue should be worked out publicly through negotiations.

9 – Does your city have policies in place to deal with complaints of discrimination or harassment? What are they?

I have worked personally on helping coordinate the Take Back the Night combined event last year with UC Santa Cruz and the City.  It was quite exciting to learn about the programs being offered to prevent violence and discrimination.  It was evident that what does exist just isn’t enough.  There needs to be more transparency in documentation and analysis into the cause and prevention of discrimination and harassment.  It seems that only a fraction of what happens is reported, and then only a fraction of what is reported is actually released publicly and analyzed, which creates incorrect information.  I believe that this problem is one of the most important issues in our community and across the world, yet because the data is not complete and being indirectly distorted simply for having a better city “image”, the issue isn’t getting the attention and resources that it needs.  I also extrapolate this issue beyond just the way we treat our fellow humans as a conscious disease within our entire society.  We admire and support a society based on “raping” and “pillaging” the earth, so by example we create a social climate that tolerates and accepts raping and discriminating against people as just something that happens.  We need to completely transform the way that we regard our societal relationships with the world and between our own communities.  This pillaging must stop, and the firsts step to that is at least truly documenting the extent of the problem.

10 - Do you support needle exchange programs to help curb the spread of HIV and other blood-borne diseases? Would you support safe needle drop-boxes in public areas, such as parks or bus depots? Will you support the local needle exchange program if they encounter interference? Would you support training for your police department around needle exchange?

Yes- I would use the vocabulary terminology of “biological waste” as there are other potential hazards in the community that should also not be disposed of in a normal trash can.  Having a safe way to deal with all “biological waste” is important.

11 - Locally, statewide and nationally, elected officials and community members have questioned the validity of the Food & Drug Administration’s lifetime ban on gay males donating blood; do you support the efforts of Congressman Farr to have the FDA reevaluate its policy, and of San Jose State University President Don Kassing to suspend all blood drives on campus until the ban is lifted? How would you guarantee that community members in your city are not discriminated against in blood donations based on sexual orientation?

I couldn’t believe this when I herd about it.  It is ridiculous to connect someone’s sexuality to weather or not they have a possible threatening disease.  It is possible to test all people for diseases, or do extra levels of screening for people more susceptible to certain diseases.  It isn’t acceptable to have preference and prejudice towards straight people, or to force people to lie for stupid reasons.

12 - Should you be elected, what items on your agenda do you feel would be of most interest to the GLBT community?

Sustainability, green health care, transformative networking, and peace.  I’m sure you will be interested in many of my issues, but overall my perspective is one of transformation.  I look at most issues very differently, and I am interested in total community societal transformation on all levels, which means that it is not enough for me to just have a few issues addressed, I want to target the issues that will be a catalyst for all issues to be addressed on a whole for the evolution of our communities and society itself.

13 - Have you in the past, and will you in the future, attend GLBT events, such as GLBT Pride, Queer Youth Leadership Awards, or the BAYMEC dinner? If you have, have you enjoyed it? If you have not attended, why not?

Yes, I intend to go to as many events as I can, my main reason for not attending past events that I would have wanted to go to is simply that I work too hard.  I am currently teaching myself to taking things slower, especially focusing on me and my husbands relationship.  I want to be more strategic with my work time, and attend more community events that I have been wanting to.

14 - If you receive The GLBT Alliance’s endorsement, will you display it in your campaign literature and on your website?

Yes of course.  I love your logo, and it will go awesome on my website once I get it updated.

15 – Have you received endorsements which you think might be of interest to the GLBT community?

First and foremost I am a grassroots community volunteer and run a non-profit community transformation center downtown on Pacific Ave.  I typically work 60 hour weeks, and will do everything I can to communicate with as many organizations as I can about my candidacy.  I am happy that the GLBT community is the first organization to contact me.  I will keep you informed as to any future endorsements.

16 - Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?

Also my campaign is that I am running for Mayor of Santa Cruz.  I don’t understand why the Mayor isn’t a popularly elected position, and will be running a ballot measure next year to change the law so that the mayor is popularly elected and held directly accountable by the people.  My hope is within two years, to become the first popularly elected mayor of Santa Cruz ever.

Click here to listen to a recording of Jay on Free Radio Santa Cruz