Blog

COVID-19 From One Black Perspective

By Monique Gaskins

This year has not gone as expected. I’ve hesitated to address our country’s current situation because there are so many different issues impacting us right now. In Portland, there won’t be a return to normality for the foreseeable future. Many people are struggling with feelings of anxiety, our economic indicators show vast discrepancies across socioeconomic groups, we are still in the midst of a global pandemic– with limitations to our physical movements and social interactions, and underneath everything, is a widespread awakening to the struggles and injustices that Black people have experienced for hundreds of years. 

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), “Fear and anxiety about a new disease and what could happen can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children.” In other words, while changing our behaviors to lower our risk of exposure to COVID-19, we may also be feeling anxious or stressed. Since we are practicing social distancing to help lower our exposure risk and opportunities to spread the disease to others, we might be isolated from our friends, family, religious organizations, and other support systems. For some people, this anxiety and isolation have led to an increase in suicidal thoughts. The CDC finds reports of suicidal ideation to be higher in Hispanic and Black individuals than in the general population. As neighbors and friends, we can respond to these facts by intentionally checking in on friends and family. 

Unsurprisingly, the increase in uncertainty has manifested itself in the economic realm too. Unemployment rates are significantly higher than they were earlier this year. In August, as I write this article, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Oregon’s unemployment rate at 10% for July. In February of this year, before the impact of the Coronavirus became widespread, our unemployment rate was 3%. Oregon’s state legislature has responded with a moratorium on evictions (currently through September 30th) and a six month grace period to pay back rent. This bill should provide some relief to Oregonians impacted by job loss or underemployment this year. Again, Black people might struggle from an outsized impact from job loss. Although Black Americans constitute 13% of the U.S. population, they hold less than 3% of the country’s wealth. Many systemic reasons are contributing to this discrepancy, but the result is that Black people may have a smaller safety net and a more difficult time finding a new job if they are laid off, furloughed, or able to access fewer shifts. 

Systemic racism as demonstrated by police violence and political apathy has played a prominent role in mainstream media this summer. Across our country, Americans can watch recordings of police officers killing Black Americans while suffering few consequences. An organization called Mapping Police Violence measures 751 fatalities from police violence from January 1st to August 24th of this year. Although Black people represent 13% of the United States’ population, they represent 28% of these deaths. Across the country, this has sparked discussions about defunding the police and using that money to instead support social services and other organizations to uplift our communities rather than relying on disciplinary-first tactics. 

The city of Portland’s 2021 budget, including funds for the Portland Police Bureau, was approved even after racial unrest and protests had become more prominent. Although some organizations and city council members supported a more significant cut to the Portland Police Bureau’s budget, only a fraction of that proposed 50 million dollars was re-routed to other parts of the city’s budget. However, Portlanders have dedicated their time and risked their safety to continue to push for changes from the Police Bureau and our city’s leadership.

The impacts of the COVID-19 global pandemic are being felt differently by different parts of our population. Black people are more likely to be negatively impacted in many ways; we are more susceptible to economic instability, more likely to hold jobs that increase exposure risks, and more likely to suffer from the effects of police violence. Through the repeated acts of public violence against Black people, it may feel like society is saying that Black Lives do not matter. Locally, our city’s protests demonstrate empathy for Black Lives from a majority white city. Protesters demonstrate their willingness to risk their safety in solidarity with Black people by showing up nightly and standing against police brutality. Portland’s recurring protests demonstrate that there are people in our communities who are willing to support Black Lives.

I’m a Black Portlander, and this is only my opinion. I’m sure my background is very different from many other Black Portlanders. My perspective cannot represent everyone’s point of view. But, if any of this resonates with you, there are ways for you to provide support. Locally, you can join nightly protests or donate to the Black Resilience Fund or PAALF (Portland African American Leadership Forum). Local organizations, like Black Feast, also support Black joy as their way of resisting the violence and inequality felt by many Black Americans. You can donate to these organizations or support Black-owned businesses and artists here in Portland. 

Across the country, many professors, authors, and artists have shared resources to help us understand racism better. We have options spanning books, articles, movies, and podcasts such as Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson, The 1619 Podcast by the New York Times, and “Where do I donate” by Courtney Martin. We can support national and local elections and get out the vote campaigns. Portland’s next mayor and potential Police Bureau Commissioner will be decided in this cycle along with national leadership. There is no reason for us to sit on the sidelines. This year has not gone as expected. COVID-19 highlights some of our systemic failures and shortcomings. This year has been challenging for so many people; I hope that we can look at our collective weaknesses and take this opportunity to build a more just society.

Sources: 

CDC – stress from coronavirus: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/managing-stress-anxiety.html#:~:text=The%20coronavirus%20disease%202019%20(,services%20you%20rely%20on.

CNN – increase in suicidal thoughts: https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/14/health/young-people-suicidal-ideation-wellness/index.html

Oregon unemployment statistics: https://www.bls.gov/eag/eag.or.htm

Rent moratorium: https://multco.us/chair-kafoury/covid-19-eviction-moratorium-information#:~:text=If%20you%20are%20a%20tenant,for%20nonpayment%20during%20the%20moratorium.&text=Tenants%20will%20have%20a%20six,rent%20from%20the%20moratorium%20period.

NPR – Black Americans and Covid 19: https://www.npr.org/2020/06/03/868469779/black-americans-bear-the-brunt-of-the-covid-19-pandemics-economic-impact

Mapping police violence: https://mappingpoliceviolence.org/

Paalf defund police: https://www.paalf.org/defund

Police budget: https://www.oregonlive.com/portland/2020/06/portland-passes-budget-with-millions-in-cuts-to-police-spending-but-short-of-public-demand-for-50-million-reduction.html

Resources:

Where do I donate: https://thebolditalic.com/where-do-i-donate-why-is-the-uprising-violent-should-i-go-protest-5cefeac37ef9

Just Mercy: https://justmercy.eji.org/

1619 Podcast: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/23/podcasts/1619-podcast.html

Eliot Neighborhood Association General Member Meeting Agenda 10/19/2020 6:30pm

Chairs: Jimmy Wilson and Allan Rudwick

Monday, October 19 6:30-8:00

Zoom link

(or for audio only, call +1 669-900-6833, Meeting ID: 891 8010 0204,
Passcode: 253756)

1 Welcome & Introductions (6:30pm)

2 Neighborhood Update

3 Board Elections – Choose Directors for the Coming year

4. Old Business/Updates  

5. Approve amended minutes from September’s meeting

Boise Eliot Native Grove Update

By Andrine de la Rocha

Hello, Grove Friends!

Here in our third summer, the Grove is looking incredibly lush. As the shrubs grow to fill (and overfill!) their allotted areas, the vegetative contours of the Grove are starting to really look the way we imagined them when we first began. The Willow Dome is rebounding well from the bizarre massive water-main flood of last summer, and we seem to be attracting not just bees but dragonflies and birds of many species. Thank you so much for all your incredible help in making our dream a reality.

Now we’re thinking about a few equipment upgrades, and hope y’all might be able to kick in a little financial support.  

When we first began watering the Grove, we dragged our expensive hose across the street and discovered that auto traffic ruptured and destroyed the unprotected hose.  For the last couple of years, we’ve protected the hose with four 2” x 12” boards which are huge and heavy (as our Watering Heroes can attest to). They’ve done a great job, but are splintering, cracking, and breaking under the stress.

We’d need some actual hose ramps to protect them, which should both a) do a better job, b) last longer, and c) be much easier to drag out into the street and back. The ones we looked at are black rubber with a bright yellow lid, rated for 20-30 tons per axle, which should stand up even to the garbage and delivery trucks that occasionally traverse the hose.

Six 3’4” pieces, at $46 each, – 8% bulk discount, free shipping, = $254. 

The tripod for our sprinkler has done good service, but one of the legs is broken: the clip that holds it in extended position no longer works. Replacement tripod = $40

We also need a couple of bags of concrete to set the ceramic bird/bee bath in place, AND one of our really good hoses just broke at the hose bib last week and needed a repair kit = $19 which brings us up to a total of about: $325.

It would help so much if you felt comfortable with tossing a few (or a lot of) bucks at the project. Please use https://www.patreon.com/BoiseEliotNativeGrove to become a monthly Patron and/or make single donations through our PayPal account here: https://www.paypal.com/paypalme/NativeGrovePDX

There are about 150 people on our email list at this time, so if each of you threw say $3-5 at us, we could cover these costs. If you want to give more or cover the entire cost, we’ll name the hose ramps after you, and sing your praises every time we water the Grove. On the other hand, if you are willing to set up a monthly payment with a shout-out and adopt-a-plant perks, click on the Patreon link here:  https://www.patreon.com/BoiseEliotNativeGrove

Our Patreon and PayPal launch has so far attracted ELEVEN brave contributors who will have trees, shrubberies, and bee-hotel rooms named after them!

We’ve met several of our goals with these pioneer patrons and as such will be able to 1) purchase new bee-straws for the bee hotel, 2) purchase supplies to fix the hexagonal bench and install the birdbath, and 3) help pay for the water to keep the trees and plants alive! As those first funds arrive, we’ll get those things on the schedule. Until then, keep spreading the word and saving the world.

Also! Please share these links and tell people about the Grove and come visit and take pictures and post them and tag us and just help people find out about us and enjoy this miraculous place we’ve created together.

Thanks as ever for your ongoing support, physically, emotionally, spiritually, financially, and psychically. We hope to see you soon in the Grove (all masked up) and in the World (safe and distanced), and in the Streets (don’t forget to Vote!)

Much Love,

Andrine & Howard

P.S. Full disclosure: we were able to borrow the funds to purchase the hose ramps, and we’d like to pay that back to the generous person who fronted us the funds.

Boise Eliot Native Grove

~300 N Ivy St  PDX OR

fb: BoiseEliotNativeGrove

ig: @BoiseEliotNativeGrove

https://www.nativegrovepdx.org/

ENA Board of Directors and Committees: Election Process and Responsibilities

Every year at the General Assembly Meeting on the third Monday in October, we have elections for the next year’s Board of Directors for the Eliot Neighborhood Association. The term starts in November and runs through October of the next year. Then, in November, the new board directors elect the officers. According to our bylaws, the officer positions include “Chair, Vice-Chair (or Co-Chairs), Recorder, Treasurer,  and if agreed upon, Newsletter Editor.” The bylaws can be found here on our website: https://eliotneighborhood.org/association/bylaws-and-policies/bylaws/

Other elected positions on the board are Community Outreach, the NECN (Northeast Coalition of Neighborhoods) representative for Eliot, and Webmaster.

The Board of Directors’ responsibilities are few but very important to commit to. Directors are responsible for attending monthly board meetings (70% attendance or better desired) which are held on the 3rd Monday of each month from 6:30-8:30 pm. To be respectful of the board and guest speakers’ time, a director is expected to arrive at the meeting on time or to notify the Chair if an absence is unavoidable. They are asked to suggest topics for the board to discuss, read all minutes from the previous meeting before the current month’s meeting, and send any edits to the Recorder promptly.  Minutes from the prior month’s meeting are approved by a majority vote by a quorum of directors. Additionally, directors are asked to volunteer time at association organized events and help write letters to various organizations.

This is a working board, not just an advisory board and we are working together to make Eliot a great place to live and work. Volunteering on this board is a great opportunity to get to know more of your neighbors, learn about businesses in the neighborhood, work on issues facing the neighborhood, improve livability and also help to educate the residents about the history of Eliot.

In addition to board directors, we also have committees to join. These require no board meeting attendance  and their meetings are held at times determined by the specific committee. Currently, we have a Livability Committee which includes our Adopt-A-Block team, E-Act a committee working to get diesel trucks filtered to improve our air quality, the Land Use and Transportation Committee, and the Newsletter team. All of these committees need more members and other committees can be created as the need arises.

Our board is becoming more diverse each year and we hope to continue to include renters, homeowners, business representatives, students, and retirees. The beauty of Eliot is the tapestry of unique people that make up our neighborhood and we want you to be a part of the neighborhood association’s future.

Letter from the Co-Chair

As I went for a walk last night, I was breathing in wildfire smoke. These are not normal times. I keep hearing calls to vote, as if our problems are political in nature. Society is not what it once was. As someone who likes to host friends, I am finding myself struggling to maintain my social connections during the time of covid-19. 

I worry about our organization, the Eliot Neighborhood Association (ENA). Our roles in my time with the ENA have been:

  • To organize and put out the Eliot News (a huge task). 
  • To be a space to discuss neighborhood issues, development proposals, city projects and plans, and advocate for a better future
  • To put on annual events like a neighborhood cleanup
  • To be a resource for neighbors needing help navigating the city’s bureaucracy

Recently, our organization is feeling depleted. We have been continuing to meet over zoom, but we are not really able to have an easily accessible open door for a community space. As a result, we are not gaining members and seeing as much of the public as we normally would. Many of our members have stepped down from positions and committees, more than I have seen in my 10 years with the ENA. We need your help! 


These times are trying. The national political partisanship combined with a sense that things just are not being taken care of at a local or national level is wearing on many of us. Technology companies are getting better at keeping our attention on scrolling or watching movies and we aren’t going out and making as many connections in the world as we might otherwise. 

The most important connections we can make are with those around us. I have also found that during the pandemic, I am making stronger connections with my neighbors who live right next to me than I have ever had. These are the people who I’ll turn to first for help out if something goes wrong. I would encourage you to connect with those around you. The ENA has your back and is here for larger issues, but the easiest solutions come neighbor to neighbor. Spending more time at home has made me realize that I am blessed to live on a great block. You might find that you are too.

Eliot Neighborhood Association August 17, 2020 Meeting Minutes

Chairs: Jimmy Wilson & Allan Rudwick

Board Members Present:

  • Allan Rudwick
  • Jimmy Wilson
  • Jonathan Konkol
  • Jennifer Wilcox
  • Sue Stringer
  • Shireen Hasan

Others Present:

  • Harrison Osbourn, Dawson Park subcommittee
  • Thacher Schmid, independent journalist (ThacherSchmid.com)  thachmid@gmail.com.

Meeting opened at 6:35pm.

Welcome & Introductions

Dawson Park update

  • Allan has a draft of a letter that many of the neighbors have signed on to request speed bumps on Stanton Street
    • Jonathan introduced the motion to send the letter, Sue seconded, the motion passed
  • Sue spoke with an officer today who re-emphasized the importance of reporting every incident that happens.
  • Had one subcommittee meeting, may have another one next week. Have someone from the hospital that attended, a few other organizations have also expressed support.
  • The police are not protecting Stanton street.  Multiple police officers have reported they have been told not to police this area.
  • Action steps:
    • Harrison continue to reach out to the Mayor’s office each week
    • Reach out to someone from Chief Lovell’s office (Harrison will ask for a volunteer to do this)
    • Allan will send the letter to PBOT

Old Business/Updates: 

  • NECN: NECN is changing their model, shifting power to the PSAC.  Change is coming to the Neighborhood Associations. 
  • Land Use: Did not meet
  • Back to School Backpack giveaway: Cascadia is giving away backpacks filled with back to school supplies.  Will send the info to Sue to post on the website.
  • Emanuel church giving away food August 29th starting at noon
  • Saint Philip the Deacon giving away sack lunches on Saturdays.
    • There was a suggestion to do a once a month activity for the homeless across the street with food donations.  Had an event this past Sunday.
  • Community Cycling Center follow up: William has not been able to connect with Saint Philip the Deacon Church (Pastor Maria). Shireen will follow up.
  • It was suggested to have a list of community resources posted on the website: send info to Sue and she will post it
  • All the old minutes are up on the website.
  • Newsletter deadline September 1.  Has been harder to get content lately.

Minutes

Amended minutes from July meeting were approved.  Sue moved to accept the minutes as posted. Jonathan seconded. One abstention.  Motion carried.

Meeting ended 7:35

2020-10-12 Land Use Meeting

Agenda for October 12th, 2020

7:00-8:30 pm

Zoom Link

  1. 7:00 Open meeting, Welcome guests, Introductions (5 mins)
  2. 7:05 Discuss agenda and accept any additions (5)
  3. 7:10 Proposed Draft of the Historic Resources Code Project (60) 
  4. 8:10 Discuss upcoming projects and if we want to get involved (15)
  5. 7:25 Approve Minutes (5)

Please email lutcchair@eliotneighborhood.org if you have any issues with joining Zoom.

Eliot Neighborhood Association Meeting Agenda September 21, 6:30-8:30 pm

<see instructions for connecting to the meeting below, this is different than past meetings. You can call in or use video chat>


1 Welcome & Introductions (6:30pm)

2 Board of Directors Election and General Assembly Meeting Oct. 19

3 Angela Kremer – proposal for racism training

4 Greg Bourget, Portland clean air – regarding diesel pollution

5 Jeanine Nicole Morales (click for bio) from NARAL Pro Choice Oregon

6 Dawson Park update

7 Old Business/Updates:  

8 Approve minutes from last time

This meeting will be a WebEx meeting. See instructions below:

This is the invitation for the ENA meeting on Monday, Sept. 21.  For folks using phones or tablets, you may need to download the free WebEx app:  https://cart.webex.com/sign-up-webex

You can also call in.  Then you should be able to just click on the link below.

When it’s time, join your Webex meeting here:

Join meeting

Meeting number (access code): 146 614 8315

Meeting password: JKyxMpU28j7

Tap to join from a mobile device (attendees only)
+1-415-655-0003,,1466148315## United States Toll

Join by phone
+1-415-655-0003 United States Toll

Join from a video system or application
Dial 1466148315@cascadiabhc.webex.com
You can also dial 173.243.2.68 and enter your meeting number.

Consider Joining Local AARP Chapter 5624

By Richard Hunter

Northeast Portland residents may not know anything about the AARP local chapter 5624, and for those who know we exist, you might know much about us. 

We are the only Local Chapter of AARP in the State of Oregon made up of 158 African Americans, age ranging from 50 to 90 years old. Our membership is still growing.  We hope to double or triple our membership size by this time next year. 

Since the COVID19 shut down began in March this year, we have been unable to meet for our monthly luncheon sessions, so we created a newsletter as a way to stay in touch with our members and keep them informed.  We remain active through our executive board and small committee projects until we are able to all come together again.  Some of us are actively involved with our AARP State Office of Volunteers.  In the midst of a pandemic, nationwide protesting, fires, and bad air quality, we are a part of the most vulnerable in our community, but we remain healthy, encourage the wearing of masks, washing of hands, and social distancing.  We are resilient and our executive board is safely active.   

Keep us in your prayers and check out the newsletter here.

For more information contact Richard Hunter, Sr., Executive Board Member, 503-964-9137.

Incontinence Supplies for Low Income: Where and How To Get Products

By Harris Schacter

If you’re a part of a low income family that needs incontinence supplies, then there’s good news for you: You could get incontinence supplies at little to no cost.

There are many programs and organizations that provide incontinence supplies for low income individuals and families. The tricky part is finding them. We’ve put together a list of the best ones to make it a little bit easier for you to get the supplies you need. 

Medicaid Coverage of Incontinence Supplies for Low Income Individuals and Families

Here’s something awesome about Medicaid: most programs cover incontinence supplies for low income individuals and families. There are currently 45 states whose Medicaid programs offer some form of coverage.

Medicaid offers two major advantages for getting incontinence supplies for low income individuals and families:

  1. Reliability:
    Eligible Medicaid recipients can get a 30-day supply of incontinence products delivered to their door each month.
  2. Cost:
    In many cases, the cost of these deliveries is covered completely by the Medicaid plan.

Getting Supplies with Medicaid Benefits

To use Medicaid for incontinence supplies, you have to meet two basic requirements:

  1. You must be enrolled in a Medicaid program that provides coverage of incontinence supplies.
  2. You must visit a doctor and get a diagnosis for incontinence. Medicaid will only cover incontinence supplies if a doctor considers them medically necessary for your treatment.

You can learn more about getting supplies through Medicaid in our Medicaid Coverage of Incontinence Supplies Guide (https://www.hcd.com/incontinence/medicaid-incontinence-supplies/), including your state’s specific coverage options and requirements. You can also sign up for incontinence supply deliveries securely online at any time.  

Diaper Banks

Diaper banks are charitable organizations that provide diapers and incontinence supplies for low income individuals and families in their community. In most cases, these supplies are distributed by the organization for free.

Each organization has its own policies for what kind of products they provide and how they are given out. Some diaper banks only provide diapers for young children, while others may also provide products for adults. Many organizations only hand out supplies at designated times, and some require a request for supplies before pickup.

Eligibility Requirements

Eligibility requirements are also different for each diaper bank. In some cases, the diaper bank mayrequire evidence of low-income status in order to get supplies. This may include the following:

  • Enrollment in Medicaid
  • Food Stamps
  • Letter of Assistance from the State
  • Prescription showing a need of supplies

Before you visit a diaper bank, you should call to find out if they offer the type you need, and what their eligibility requirements are. Keep in mind that most diaper banks operate through donations, and may not always have a regular supply of incontinence products when you visit.

You can search for a diaper bank in your area at the National Diaper Bank Network’s online directory (https://nationaldiaperbanknetwork.org/home-covid19/). If you can’t find a bank in your area, try your local food banks, which sometimes also provide incontinence supplies.

Family Caregiver Grants

Another way for low income families and individuals to get incontinence supplies is through family caregiver grants. Family caregiver grants are designed exclusively for caregivers who need assistance in caring for aging family members. This includes getting incontinence supplies.

Family Caregiver Grant Eligibility

Eligibility for participation is outlined by each state’s Department of Health and Human Resources, and could include the following requirements:

  • Adult family members or other informal caregivers age 18 and older providing care to individuals 60 years of age and older.
  • Adult family members or other informal caregivers age 18 and older providing care to individuals of any age with Alzheimer’s disease and related disorders
  • Older relatives (not parents) age 55 and older providing care to children under the age of 18; and
  • Older relatives, including parents, age 55 and older providing care to adults ages 18-59 with disabilities.

A good place to learn more about caregiver grant services is through the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (www.n4a.org). Here, you can search for participating aging agencies in your area and find resources for caregivers. You can also contact your local Department of Health and Human Resources to find out what grant options are available.

Other Resources

Incontinence supplies for low income individuals and families are not always easy to find, but they are out there. If none of the previous options are available, there still may be a solution for you. Here are some resources that may be able to help you find incontinence products in your area.  

Administration for Community Living (ACL)
The ACL is a government-funded organization dedicated to providing support for aging and disabled people. They provide a wide range of services that includes assistance grants, connecting people needed services, and support networking for aging and disabled populations.

2-1-1
2-1-1 is a service that helps connect people in need to services and organizations that can help them. Their website offers an online search, and you can also call to speak with their trained professionals who will help locate a service that potentially can help you get incontinence supplies.

The Simon Foundation for Continence
The Simon Foundation for Continence keeps a directory of diaper banks that supply adult incontinence products. They also provide educational resources and support about incontinence and how to manage it.

The Salvation Army
The Salvation Army partners with many diaper and food banks to help provide incontinence supplies to those in need.  In some areas, they also provide referral services that can help connect people who need incontinence supplies to the organizations that can provide them.

The Road to a New Road, Interstate 5 Updates

By Ruth Eddy

The Oregon Department Of Transportation’s (ODOT)  plans to expand I-5 in our neighborhood are not moving at highway speeds. The reshaping of an asphalt landscape is slow. The big machinery that digs the dirt is quiet, the bureaucratic gears of planning and design are fully in motion, with three significant meetings occurring in the last few months.

First, the Oregon Transportation Committee (OTC) met on April 2nd to make a decision that had been delayed since December at Governor Brown’s request. At the end of the three-hour meeting, which was held on Zoom and live-streamed for the public on YouTube, the five-member board voted unanimously to move forward into a design phase on the I-5 Rose Quarter Project without completing an Environmental Impact Statement

In response to the forward motion set by the OTC, the project’s Executive Steering Committee (ESC) had its first Zoom meeting on May 22nd to set a framework by which to make future decisions about the project.  The 16 members of the ESC were led by facilitator Dr. Steven Holt. Half of nearly two-hour-long meeting was dedicated to introductions. Dr. Holt asked each of the members to answer the question, “What does restorative justice mean to you?”  The answers varied in detail but addressed similar themes. Marlon Holmes answered succinctly, “Calling on a community to address ills or wrongs committed against that community, and with the perpetrators addressing how those ills and wrongs have affected the community.” 

A week later, on May 28th, the Community Advisory Committee (CAC) held its second meeting, also on Zoom. According to Megan Chanel, the Rose Quarter Project manager, the project design was approximately 15% completed and CAC would advise all further work. “Think of it as we’ve brought the sandbox, but we need your help in burying some sand helping us build the sandcastle,” Chanel said.

Christopher John O’Connor, one of 24 members on the committee, believed the metaphor to be overly optimistic and offered his own saying, “The house has been built, we know how many bathrooms there’s going to be, we know what the general layout is, we’re going to be discussing… what color to paint it.”

Another member of the committee, Liz Fouther-Branch, expressed frustration with the obtuse language used to describe components of the project. Fouther-Branch said, “We need to be able to go back to our communities and speak to them in plain English about what the benefits are, what the impacts are. Breaking down the transportation language into community language so that you can build that trust in community.”

The CAC will meet again on Tuesday, June 23, 5:30-7:30. The next ESC meeting has not yet been scheduled, but all meetings are open to the public and archived on ODOT’s Youtube page.