Lisa Hughet recently sent the following email to Raleigh City Council. Lisa has lived in Raleigh for nearly 30 years and says “my activism really kicked into high gear during the pandemic. Ironically, coinciding with a new City Council who appears not to have the residents of Raleigh as their highest priority. I’m also active in affordable housing matters and animal rescue.”
Mayor Baldwin and members of City Council,
To encourage and continue your goal of increasing community engagement, I’d like to strongly urge you to ensure capability for remote participation. The technology is already in place and people have not only become familiar with it, but have become accustomed to it.
The benefits are obvious. It’s an efficient use of time for the Council (not having to wait for people to walk to and from the podium). It increases people’s feelings of respect by their elected officials by removing barriers to participation.
By not including a virtual component, you place unnecessary burdens on those members of the public who are not able to attend in person and want to be able to speak to you directly. This not only includes those uncomfortable with in-person gatherings during a pandemic but also those that need to work, don’t have access to transportation, care for people in their household, single parents, etc.
I look forward to attending your virtual meetings in the future!