October 31st, 2020

Lethbridge Community and Economic Recovery Committee organizing to respond to post-COVID-19 challenges


By Lethbridge Herald on June 9, 2020.

Herald file photo by Ian Martens - Prior to the province's relaunch, a posted sign marks a temporary closure at a downtown salon. @IMartensHerald

Tim Kalinowski
Lethbridge Herald
tkalinowski@lethbridgeherald.com
City council’s Lethbridge Community and Economic Recovery Committee (LCERC) has spent its first two meetings getting organized to respond to the challenges facing the city in the post-COVID-19 recovery period.
“We’re trying to get moving as quickly as we can because we do know there are a lot of needs,” says committee chair Belinda Crowson. “In a lot of cases, for example, deferrals are going to be coming due. But we also know we have a lot of unknowns. We don’t know exactly how everything is going to play out. When we look back at other natural disasters (in our history) a lot of impact comes in five, six, nine months or a year after. We are trying to look at how others have coped and trying to come up with a mechanism ourselves.”
Crowson says she expects to see specific proposals on the table “pretty quickly” from all of the LCERC’s four subcommittees, and hopefully as early as the committee’s next meeting on June 18.
“What we need to have is make sure there is one community voice, and we are all moving in the same direction,” she says; “so any groups we know who are already working, we are trying to work with them and we do not want to duplicate and undo the great work they have already done. It’s a matter of being aware, connecting with the right groups in the community, and then seeing what role the City has in this.”
Crowson says council’s role is to represent and unify the committee around a group of specific policies to help address the worst potential impacts of the COVID crisis.
“If people start seeing some of the things we want to bring out, the committee will speak for itself,” she says. “Anything we do is going to have people who are going to look on it in a negative way, even without them knowing what we are doing, and so what I will do is let our actions speak louder than our words. And as we bring things out, people will see the benefit of it.”
Being an historian, Crowson has a handy quote on hand taken from a Lethbridge alderman in 1912 to address any potential naysayers.
“If Archangels ran the City of Lethbridge,” she quotes, “people would still complain.”
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