Dialogue has become a challenge for so many in this current landscape. There can be hesitancy to share opinions or beliefs, and there is little room given to hear someone with opposing positions. This environment is counterproductive.
These dialogues were designed in response to the consideration of the naming of the Ruper A. Nock Middle School after a story was shared about the namesakes’ actions regarding a Black student, and the presence of the Thin Blue Line flag at the police station.
The purpose of these dialogues is not to come to a solution on either of these issues. Rather, it is to create a forum where all voices can be heard, and perspectives can be shared in a safe space. The hope with this model is that all participants are heard and feel valued. With an increase in compassion and understanding for our neighbors, we can make Newburyport a place that is safe, welcoming, and inclusive to all who work, live, and play here.
The Newburyport Public Schools have been working with Essential Partners over the past year to promote constructive dialogue and allow for discussion around difficult and/or polarizing topics. The City is hoping for a similar outcome with this method.
These dialogues are open to anyone living, working for, or working in the City. Participants must be at least 14 years old.
We would love to have you join us! Your voice matters. By participating, you will be taking part in creating an open and welcoming community.
While not mandatory, we are strongly suggesting that participants commit to all three dialogues if they are able, as they are designed to build off each other. All dialogues will be VIRTUAL, on the following Tuesday nights from 6 PM – 8 PM.
- June 8- What are our community values and beliefs?
- June 15- What is the role of law enforcement in our community?
- June 29- How do our values guide city decision-making?
This year the City of Newburyport will be celebrating Juneteenth, an annual holiday recognizing the end of slavery in the United States on Friday June 18th at 11:30 am outside City Hall. Edward Carson from Governor’s Academy will be there to speak on the history and importance of celebrating this day, along with some local leaders, providing insights, blessings and written words. The event will end with a raising of the Juneteenth flag and the playing of the Black national anthem.
Please join us at City Hall on June 18th to celebrate an important and significant holiday in our history. If you’re looking for more opportunities to learn about and celebrate Juneteenth, check out the Black Heritage Trail of New Hampshire’s Juneteenth celebration[http://blackheritagetrailnh.org/2021-juneteenth-celebration/] occurring June 17-19th or Merrimack Valley Black and Brown Voices’ Juneteenth Annual Block Party Celebration[https://www.mvbbvoices.org/events/juneteenth] on June 19th from 5-8pm in Andover.
If you are interested in participating, you need to sign up in advance. You can do so by visiting the DEI Alliance’s website – www.nbptdeialliance.com