Election season is upon us once again. While the weather certainly didn’t care about the election on Feb. 16, we must show that citizens care about local elections.
Local elections are perhaps the most vital component of a strong society; our votes help determine the path that leadership will guide us along.
We need leaders who are unafraid to initiate those difficult conversations about transparency and equity and who persist in centering that conversation on creating compassionate solutions. Kudos to Leo Chiapetta, who started the conversation about increasing transparency and accountability on the Police and Fire Commission. That behavior shows leadership.
We need leaders who are knowledgeable about the nuance of their sector in local government. Citizens and candidates talk about addressing mental health or the achievement/opportunity gap but fail to recognize the underlying factors that create those issues. Current leadership has dropped the ball on these important issues on far too many occasions.
We need leaders who are dedicated to balancing the interests of all citizens and stakeholders. Some candidates on our April ballot will tell us that they will do that but have made public comments denouncing the KEA or anyone who shares their concerns about public safety. Divisiveness like that does not benefit citizens; it creates barriers to their participation.
We can have a direct impact on creating the change Kenosha is hungry for by embracing leadership that will serve all Kenosha citizens, in both words and action. We must carefully consider the citizens who are seeking to guide Kenosha as we move forward in 2021.
Lift your voices, Kenosha, and make a plan to vote on April 6.
Valarie Douglas, Kenosha