Silverio Pelayo voted for Bernie Sanders in the California primary. But now, the 31-year-old Pacoima resident isn't too sure who he'll support in November.
"I'm inclined to vote for Hillary Clinton just because she's more aligned with values I'm hoping to vote for," Pelayo says. "I'm also looking into Jill Stein."
For Pelayo, it's hard to find values that drove him to vote for Bernie Sanders in the current pool of candidates. "I'm looking for something more fulfilling and not necessarily economic. I want something more on a human level."
Wanting something more than just economic prosperity is why he currently works at the El Nido Family Center located inside Pacoima Community Center. As a case manager, he counsels families on parenting, child abuse and teen pregnancy prevention.
Pelayo always knew that he wanted to work at a non-profit.
"At a very early age, I understood class and race. Maybe not in those specific terms," he says. "I had a natural tendency to want to buy my mom a bigger house."
However, as he grew older, Pelayo's goals evolved. "I started being more aware and politicized. I wanted to extend outwardly," he says.
To help his mother and his community, he followed the path toward higher education. After high school, Pelayo attended a local community college, then transferred to UC Berkeley where he majored in ethnic studies.
"There was a narrative that you go to high school, then college and that will get you a better paying job and you will make money," Pelayo says.
However, at 31 he's feeling the pressure so many millennials are feeling. "I've been putting off paying my student debt because I'm hoping that at some point something will happen where I don't have to pay," Pelayo says. "Not only that, it's just hard to pay them."
His dream of buying his mother a bigger house – that's on hold for now too.
Being that the biggest issue in his life is his student debt, Pelayo felt that Sanders shared his belief that money should not be in the way of someone trying to better their life. Beyond that, Pelayo shared the Vermont senator's thoughts on immigration, the war and economic inequality.
While Pelayo's original choice is out of the race, he will still cast his vote come November.
"Before I was very much against voting and participating in the political process," he says. "As much as I may disagree with the political system and the way it works, it does have an effect on number of people. I minimally participate and I work on myself. That to me is equally a contribution to politics."