Wednesday, December 07, 2005
Harwich Board of Selectmen Mission Statement and Vision Principles
First of all we want to thank the Honorable Board of Selectmen for having an honest, frank, and public debate at Selectmen's meeting held on Monday, 12/5/2005. We also applaud the fast response to the removal of the bike crossing sign (within a day) after is was spotted, defaced with a swatiska sprayed on it with red paint. This rapid response was collaborative effort between Harwich citizens, Harwich Police Department, and Department of Public Works, and Highway Department. This immediate response is to be commended. Some communities on the Cape still carry hate signs from other smears and sign defacements still not removed or not corrected after several years. Harwich is different! Now, let's get together on Sunday and show that love for our brothers and sisters. Take an hour and come join this walk at 1:00 PM, bring a can of soup for the Food Pantry and join in afterward for soup and breaking bread together. Tell your neighbors, friends, and community of faiths.
The Harwich No Place for Hate Coalition is seeking popular support to encourage our Board of Selectman to join in with 59 other Massachusetts Communities including Provincetown and Falmouth of the and to study then adopt the NPFH initiative for Harwich. The No Place for Hate Campaign was initiated in Philadelphia by the Anti-Defamation League or ADL. It was brought to New England by the late Leonard P. Zakim as a collaborative effort between the ADL and The Massachusetts Municipal Association, (MMA). According to the MMA Outreach Coordinator Patricia Mikes, "In the fall of 1999 information packages were sent out to all the Mayors and Selectmen of all cities and towns across the Commonwealth, including Harwich. No action was ever taken." The Harwich NPFH committee believes that this is the right time to revisit this initiative for the town of Harwich.
The NPFH initiative is in harmony with the stated polices and mission statement for our schools. (*) The values of respect, individual and collective responsibility, honesty, integrity, tolerance and acceptance of self and others are essential to an ever-changing school community. * Excerpt from the Town of Harwich Mission Statement for all Schools.
The Mission Statement of the Town of Harwich is to ensure the safety, education, and well being of the community; to deliver efficient, effective economically viable services that respond to community needs; to encourage a community of trust and honesty; to respect cultural and economic diversity and to present the historic character of the community.
"We will govern ourselves in a manner that encourages participation by all, that provides adequate information for making informed choices and acts in the interests of the community as a whole. We will acknowledge the needs of others and consider compromises that are in the best interests of the Town."
Next time you have to go to Boston, as you cross this magnificent bridge named after Lenny Zakim, be mindful of the battle of Bunker Hill and pray that we can bridge our own differences with a safe crossing for all involved. This can be that perfect teaching moment for all of us in Harwich to adhere to our own mission statement.. "We will acknowledge the needs of others and consider compromises that are in the best interests of the Town."