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Diversity Needed - Elect More Women! Letter to the Editor

To The Editor:

Greene County candidate for NY State Supreme Court Justice, Carol Donnelly-Stevens, recently called out the dearth of diversity, and specifically of qualified women, on court benches. She is right! Issues of the need for diversity, minority and gender diversity, go straight down to the grassroots here in Columbia County, as well.

There is a paucity of diversity among the employees at the Sheriffs Department. These are great County jobs. Some men make as much as $50,000 in overtime alone. Why are there only a handful of women and minority job holders? Time for a change and time for some sunlight in recruitment practices?

There is a paucity of women and minorities represented on our County Board of Supervisors. Stalwart, Betty Young, is stepping down after a lifetime devoted to being a Human Services advocate on the Board. This will leave only Sarah Sterling, Ellen Thurston and Robin Andrews representing the special concerns of thousands of women in our county. I find it interesting that these women Supervisors... and our minority Supervisors... voted for halting spending on the County Airport until all the facts were in. The GOP men voted them down.

Why are the GOP men on the County Board hot to spend millions on a richman's small airport and in the same breath question if the County can afford to keep funding Pinehaven Nursing Home? Care of the poor, elderly and sick by a primarily female workforce doesn't seem to be a priority for our GOP Supervisors. Women need to earn a living wage here in Columbia County, too. We women are breadwinners, caregivers and taxpayers. Time for a change and time to elect candidates who "get it".

Of the six Democratic candidates in Stuyvesant's races this year, four are women. Currently, only one woman sits on the Stuyvesant Town Council and she is not running.

These women candidates are mature, experienced in their respective fields, have lived in the Hudson Valley all their lives, have worked and raised families here.

They know the issues in town and aren't afraid to speak up when something looks unjust or to ask questions when the "official facts" look dodgy. As Donnelly-Stevens said, don't just vote for us because we are women; vote because we are qualified women!

Please vote for Lee Jamison for Supervisor, Melanie Donahoe for Town Council, Nancy Thomas for Clerk/Tax Collector and Attorney Nancy Trichter for Town Justice. We also ask your support for our enlightened men, Ed Kiernan for Town Council and Ned Depew for Town Justice.

Lee Jamison