We help because we care about people, but we also help because it is good for our economy. Historically, the leaders of our city have made the tough decisions necessary to support our children and families. Investments in our future have been made by addressing the needs of the most vulnerable members of our community. That’s why today we have schools, libraries, and hospitals we can all be proud of. It’s also why we have a great Elyria City Health District that continues to protect and serve our city’s residents.
Public Health services are utilized by all segments of our community - and particularly by those who are facing some of life’s most complex challenges. More easily put, our city Health District is a continued investment in our core values, and it keeps our families safe and healthy.
That's why I was so disappointed to hear that Mayor Holly Brinda's budget proposal will cut nearly $500,000 from the city Health District's budget. The services provided by this department are critical in protecting the quality of life of all of Elyria citizens. We simply cannot allow all the hard-fought progress we have made over the past years be dismantled overnight.
Hundreds of families in my ward, and across the rest of our city, are still struggling to get back on their feet. The cuts the administration is proposing will simply knock these families right back down.
More detailed discussions are required to identify critical paths of work and the short and long-term effects of so drastically cutting the city Health District's budget. Any other path would be both unfair and irresponsible. It is also important that these conversations include all stakeholders to ensure that any changes to the department are as seamless as possible. Otherwise, fewer families will have the opportunity to access valuable public health services.
One of the tenets of good government includes representation of those whose voices are not usually heard - and of those who are routinely shut out of the decision making process.Transparency and inclusion are important so that our community can be united behind this important quality of life decision.
Together, we can arrive at a solution that respects both the city’s finances and the needs of its residents. But as it currently stands, the proposed cut to the city Health District's budget is borderline reckless, and it vastly undervalues the critical role the city Health District plays in keeping our community safe. The residents of our city deserve a more reasonable and responsible approach.