Letter to the Editor: Our society can and must do better

To the Editor:

Our country faces significant challenges and unsettling times. Northeast Iowa Community Action Corporation (NEICAC) joins the nation in the devastation of recent events that has, once again, put the spotlight on how the unfair treatment of people of color has impacted communities across our country. Over 55 years ago, community action agencies were born out of the civil rights movement and it was then they committed to the alleviation of poverty and changes to public policy that created economic inequities. Because poverty and race often overlap, we must not only fight poverty, but also battle racism by addressing systematic biases and injustices that often lead to poverty.

NEICAC continues everyday efforts to make others’ lives better and be the voice for low-income individuals and families. We see first-hand the harm and anguish vulnerable people experience because of broken racial, social and economic systems. Actions speak louder than words and our society can and must do better. Our leaders need to make concerted and honest efforts to tear down racist institutions and rebuild new ones that are educated by the communities most impacted. As our name says, we are dedicated to action and will create a plan to address racial and economic barriers and along with our own internal bias that stand in the way of true equality.

Our Agency mission: Strengthening Communities Toward Lifelong Success. Our Agency Promise: Community Action changes people’s lives, embodies the spirit of hope, improves communities, and makes America a better place to live. We care about the entire community, and we are dedicated to helping people help themselves and each other.

Trisha S. Wilkins,
Executive Director of NEICAC
and the NEICAC
Board of Directors
Les Askelson, Board Chair
Julie Wurtzel, Vice Chair
Dan Byrnes, Secretary/Treasurer
John Beard
Jenny Cole
Steve Doeppke
Kelly Faga
Kari Harbaugh
Marcia Hesse
Richard Holthaus
Malissa Kappes
Janel Langreck
Shannon Michael
Tim Neil
Joseph Pisney
Wendy Shea
Martin Stanbrough
David Tilkes
Linda Voshell
Anna Wilkes
Nick Winter


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