Seven years after the death of unarmed teen Trayvon Martin, his mother has announced she’s running for public office in Miami.
Sybrina Fulton made it official Monday, May 20, that she’d be a candidate for the District 1 seat on the Miami-Dade County Commission after initially revealing the news Saturday.
“My time as a public servant began 30 years ago at Miami-Date County,” Fulton said in a statement published in part on her Instagram page. “Since 2012, I have advocated tirelessly to empower our communities and make them safer. But the work is not done. I am proud to announce that I will run to represent District 1 on the county commission.”
Fulton, who has also written a memoir about her son with his father, has said over the years that she did not want to be thrust into the spotlight after her 17-year-old son was shot and killed in the city of Sanford in central Florida by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman. She maintained that stance in an official video Monday, in which she announced her plans to run.
“Until recently, I didn’t see myself as someone who would run. But if not me, then who? If not now, then when?” she says in the clip.
“Our county must continue moving forward so our families are safe from violence, can afford to live in Miami-Dade, and have access to good paying jobs. I am ready to take on these issues and many others in county government,” her official statement continued according to the Miami Herald.
After her son’s death, Fulton established the Trayvon Martin Foundation to help empower families affected by gun violence. She’s also advocated against gun violence. Her platform is based on advocating for public safety and affordable housing and living costs as well as improving the quality of life for all citizens.
Currently, Commissioner Barbara Jordan holds the seat Fulton’s running for, but the politician’s role will be relinquished in 2020, as she’s already served the limit of two terms, the Miami Herald reported. Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver Gilbert previously announced in January that he plans to run for the seat.
Fulton’s announcement comes more than two years after she and the late teen’s father, Tracy Martin, said they were considering running for political office.
“Somebody asked a question about us running for office, and I said it was something that we were exploring, you know, in [the] long term,” Fulton told “Good Morning America” in 2017. “It’s not something that we’re filling out papers for, but we certainly want to look at the positions that are available locally and we want to look at the positions for the state of Florida and then U.S. positions.”