Leelanau County Board of Commissioners passes anti-racism resolution

Aug 19, 2020

 

A Northport man covered county signs to protest a road commissioner's racist statements. While the signs were up for a short time, his images caused a stir on social media.
Credit TOM SWIFT

The Leelanau County Board of Commissioners unanimously passed a resolution to condemn racism in county government at its Tuesday meeting.

The resolution called for inclusivity and equity of services to minority residents, while acknowledging the negative impact of racism.

The board decided to draft a resolution after the now-resigned road commissioner Tom Eckerle’s racist comments received national backlash.

But the board ran into trouble of its own last week during an executive session, as some commissioners tried to fit in language about abortion and name-calling of police as supposed forms of racism. 

During the Tuesday meeting’s public comment, Northport resident Elena Sica Mosher spoke against some commissioners’ comments.

“It is clear that this anti-racism resolution is thoroughly needed in our community,” Mosher said.

Commissioner Ty Wessell thanked minority community members who helped craft the language in the updated resolution. 

“We had some discussion about the definition of racism but we have it in here and I think that that was important to us,” Wessell said. “I think the word equity was important to us.”

In the resolution, the board said it opposed racism of all forms and that it would pursue racial sensitivity training.