When It Comes To Lifeboats....

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No doubt, we have an emergency on our hands.

The economy has hit an ice berg, which tore a big gash in the side.

We’re listing noticeably.

Now what was it they said about life boats?

Oh, yeah: Women and children first.

So please take note of the top story on the front page.

The Time Out shelter unexpectedly lost a $100,000 in grants, which last year provided about 12 percent of its $840,000 budget. Moreover, sales have dropped noticeably in the thrift store the shelter uses to raise money and donations have also dropped.

So the protectors — need protection.

Sort of like if a firefighter had a debilitating lung condition after years spent in smoky building, saving women and children.

Would you shrug and say he should have thought about that before he went into that burning building?

What will you say now, when Time Out needs the help of this Beloved Community, which it has served faithfully these past 15 years?

Make no mistake — the intimate violence inflicted on women and children by the very people who should protect and cherish them remains one of the single biggest problems in our society. One study after another has documented the complex and terrible long-term effects of such violence and neglect, especially when it’s directed at children.

No doubt, many women stay too long — hoping desperately for change. Many stay mostly because they have no where else to go. Abusers take special care to create that sort of financial and emotional dependency. Hard times only clamp the leg irons on all the tighter.

Consider what Time Out does for this community in a single year.

• Provides long-term refuge for 163 women and children, giving them precious time in a safe place to get their lives restarted without the violence and terror.

• Provides transitional housing for 283 people, with help getting an apartment or short term shelter.

• Provides more than 11,000 bed nights.

• Conducts perhaps 40 interviews with kids who have been abused or neglected, in connection with court cases.

• Provides 2,000 hours of case management, for people working to rebuild their lives.

Now they’re hurting. So who will protect the protectors?

Make it you – make it us.

We hope you will donate today, by calling (928) 468-8635 for cash donations and (928) 474-3989 to donate items to the thrift shop.

Remember – in times of crisis: Women and children first.

Needed: Cool heads in a budget crisis

Do you smell smoke? Budget smoke?

OH MY GOSH. FIRE!!

Hmm. Is that the sound of good sense getting trampled in the rush to the exits?

In case you’re wondering, we’re talking the latest furor about Payson’s budget problems.

And, don’t get us wrong: We’re glad the council this year isn’t waiting until the whole place burns down before considering a change in plan.

But then again — no need to start hollering fire in a darkened theater just yet.

Town Manager Debra Galbraith is drawing up various disaster scenarios in preparation for a mid-November council study session, spurred by signs revenues have already fallen behind projects.

But the efforts have provoked a rush of confusion, anxiety, rumor and near panic and this suggests the need for much better communications.

Moreover, we hope the council will pay closer attention to the details than they did earlier. Most especially, we hope the council will base any decisions more on how various cuts will affect citizens than on how they’ll affect town staff.

The plight of parks and recreation provides a useful case in point, as detailed in today’s paper. The parks department has done a wonderful job in the past two years. Rumsey Park bustles continually and participation in fee-paying park activities has jumped a projected 90 percent in two years — on top of a 20 percent jump in pool use.

So if falling revenues do force cuts, the council must consider agonizing questions like whether it makes more sense to keep the planning department fully staffed or wipe out all the recreation program. How to decide?

We certainly don’t envy the council’s choices. And we earnestly hope that the downturn proves shallow and short.

However, if cuts do come – we hope the council take into account direct impacts on residents in making its decisions.

Certainly, you can get people out of the building by hollering “fire.” But at what cost?

Comments

Ruby Finney 6 years, 1 month ago

The logic of maintaining a full staff in the Community Development Department when the new home construction business is almost at a standstill escapes me. It would seem logical to reduce staff until the need for their services is back.

Isn't this a little like the the "Golden Parachutes" now being bestowed on CEOs in the lending industry? I don;t mean to say the Planning department employees are not doing a good job, but simply that unless there is work to do, then staff should be reduced.

There is not a doubt that this is what would happen in private industry.

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