December 17, 2020
I would like to address the many recent concerns being raised by some members of our community regarding the work of the Equity and Inclusion Subcommittee.
The intent of the Subcommittee is to engage in conversations about how our community could be more inclusive and welcoming to all. The idea is to do our best to listen to all viewpoints and to take them into account in any deliberations.
Recently meeting notes posted on the City’s website were extrapolated into some extreme interpretations. That, in turn, led to considerable further social media commentary that continues to swirl.
I sincerely regret all the trouble and angst and want to apologize for any part I may have had in not preventing all the confusion. We are compiling, and will publish, a list of lessons learned so that we can all do better in the future, especially regarding communications.
I would also like to clarify at this point my own beliefs and values. I am speaking for myself. The Council has not yet deliberated on the issues or considered any policies. We will be putting the topic on the next council meeting in January so that the whole community can influence and observe our collective thinking at this stage.
Personally, I very much value and appreciate our police and fire personnel’s commitment and self-sacrifice to keep our community safe. I have, and always will, work to appropriately fund and provide adequate resources for our first responders.
I regard the Thin Blue Line flag as expressing deep respect and appreciation for those who have fallen in the line of duty. However, I understand that some may view it differently, and respect their right to do so.
Furthermore, I have multiple times sworn allegiance to support and defend the US and California Constitutions. The first time was as an Air Force officer nearly 50 years ago. The Constitution includes the entire Bill of Rights, and any “Big Brother” concepts are the furthest thing from my thinking.
My goal is to be able to listen to all points of view and help bring the community together. I invite and encourage all members of our community to add their perspectives to the conversation and help us all better understand and accept each other. I believe that we need to focus on those things that unite us.
Mayor Bob Woerner