Nationwide immigrants have walked off the job today. They’re closing their businesses, not buying anything and not sending their children to school to prove a point that they’re necessary to our communities. Locally, Northfield middle and High School students walked out this morning and are still convening on Bridge Square in downtown Northfield. About 200 to 250 people were gathered by 11 this morning. Gabi Estrada is a Senior at Northfield High, she said she helped organize students. Two Sophomore students created the idea is solidarity of the immigrant community, “and to
also resist the hateful rhetoric that’s been going around this past year”. The sound of chanting in the background just got louder. Marisela Casper Sanchez is a community member who shared what it meant to her, “it means as a daughter of immigrants, hardworking parents, that I have a voice, that I value my country, the United States of America, but I also embrace my Mexican nationality”. I spoke with Chief Monte Nelson who said, “the weather’s perfect, everything’s going well. We met with the students as they were finishing up some signs just to make sure they understood and we understood what was going on and to make sure that we are able to keep roadways open”. He added, “I’ve already been through the crowd all the way around and everyone is very happy about how well it’s going and how well attended it is”. The crowd was joyful and supportive. Members of the community of all ages and colors were on hand.
This letter went out to parents earlier this morning …
Parents of NHS Students:
We have been made aware that a group of our students intends to leave school tomorrow (Thursday) at 10:00 a.m. to participate in the national “A Day Without Immigrants” taking place at Bridge Square. This event is student led, and is neither being sponsored nor endorsed by the school or the district. The students’ decision to walk out of school is within the bounds of their rights as guaranteed by our Constitution. We will continue with the normal Thursday schedule of classes here at the high school. Please let me know if you have questions.
Thank you. Have a great day.
Start times, public comment and e-comments discussed at Nfld Council
Mayor Rhonda Pownell commented on the Rules of Business discussion the Council had this week. She said there’s not generally a significant amount of change, “but we really wanted to take the opportunity to ensure we’ve got the best, that we’re setting the groundwork for how we want the Council to function”. There was nearly unanimous support to move their Tuesday meeting start time to 6pm. If approved at their next meeting, it would take effect March 7th. They discussed how to better structure open public comments. The idea that had the most support was to make sure people register before making their comments. Administrator Martig said they need to educate the public, perhaps have a greeter at the meeting. City Clerk Deb Little said it’s very helpful to have their name and contact information for public record. E-comments also grabbed Council attention. Granicus offers a software program for an additional $125 a month, wherein citizens would be able to go online at the City’s website and submit their comments and questions as well as register to speak. This would become a matter of public record. Councilors DeLong and Colby questioned the cost and suggested they try it through the end of the year. Colby said that if there are only 2 to 5 comments a month, they should rethink it. Peterson White felt they should give it a year. There will be a cut-off time for E-comments to be included in the Council meeting. There are still plenty of other considerations and we’ll hear more next week.
Osterman in as Interim Ex. Dir. of the Nfld Hist. Soc.
President of the Northfield Historical Society Board of Directors, Greg Kneser, announced yesterday that Cathy Osterman will serve as interim executive director as Hayes Scriven heads north! Osterman has worked at the society since 2012, most recently as part-time curator. Kneser said finding the right person for a leadership position like this can be a challenge, so the board was pleased to learn that Cathy was not only interested in running the Society, but also very qualified for the role. Osterman will fill in leaves to become the new executive director of the Richard I. Bong Veterans Historical Center in Superior, Wisconsin. We’ll hear more from Osterman coming up. And next Thursday there will be an Open House for Scriven at the Northfield Historical Society from 4 to 7pm. The public is invited and encouraged to attend.