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Letters to the Editor

Tracy Hellmann speaks out about CCT article: Letter to the Editor

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After recently reading about the past electoral board meeting and the petitions of three local incumbents in question, I must address an issue in the article published in the CCT and some of the public’s perception on this matter. First and foremost, I urge the writer who wrote the story on the electoral board meeting to seek the truth.

It was stated in the article that only the incumbent’s petitions were copied, which is false.  All five candidate’s petitions were copied the same day on December 26th.  One phone call to the school administrator’s office could clear this up.  Another issue with the writings of the CCT, pertaining to a previous editorial, the editorial had begun with the phrase, “…rumor has it…”  What happened to the facts?  Does sensationalism sell?  It is the easiest and most common practice for candidates seeking public office to cross reference petitions to seek support from people who may have not signed your petition.  After all, you can’t think of everybody you know when gathering your signatures.

In the caption on the front page in last week’s paper, the writer clearly states Mr. Bernot, a member of the electoral board, was “partial” because “he was defending the objections that were filed.”  According to the Illinois State Board of Elections the objections were valid, regardless of who put what spin on the objections filed.  I feel reassured with the fact that a board member did not go into the meeting with a blind eye, as I hope other members did as well.  What is so wrong with knowing the facts and law? Why lay blame on anyone who would has the right under law to make sure the law is followed?

It is paramount to get it right for the sake of your supporters and voters, in essence they are the ones who would have suffered if the candidate would have been removed from the ballot (had it went to court) over technicalities that the law requires.  We do not make up the rules and regulations for elections, the state legislature does.

My question is, since the three candidates have run for office before, why didn’t they follow the petition regulations?  Why were they exempted from following the regulations?  Is it to be implied that rules and regulations apply to some but not to others?   I urge anyone who supports a certain candidate to have them simply follow the rules in place, we ask nothing less from our children.  In a similar circumstance, my son failed a test because he didn’t follow the rules and instructions provided to him.

To object to a candidate’s petition is nothing out of the ordinary and it is not a personal attack on any individual.  In fact, according to the Rockford Record, a city council candidate in Loves Park, IL was removed from the ballot, after being objected to, because he did not properly fasten the pages of his petition sheets.  Also, a school board candidate was removed from the ballot after being objected to, according to the Tinely Park Patch, because the candidate did not fill out the headings of their petitions. According to the Alton Telegraph other area candidates were objected to as well, such as in Roxana School District and Woodriver Township, those candidates were removed from the ballot.  In a separate incident, in CAHOKIA TOWNSHIP, an objection was made on the last day of petition filing to a petition that was submitted by someone who was going to run for Highway Commissioner.  Where is the public’s outcry for him, a hardworking, God fearing public servant?

I have been in the realm of local politics for over 25 years.  I have helped both democrats and republicans, canvassed, phoned, put signs up, went to events, raised funds for candidates, you get the gist.  Mostly everyone has been political at least once in their life, whether they know it or not.  According to the definition of “politics,” if you have tried to influence someone for a particular reason or purpose, you have been political.  However, people don’t like the word “politics” or “political” because it resonates with the Chicago thugs and the Washington crooks.

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For example, a church membership drive, the Pepsi grant, and any grant an entity receives from the government or other sources is political.  I am personally exhausted from hearing that one person is more “political” than the other.  Anyone who runs for a public office obviously cares for the public and its interests.  Why else would they run for a position that pays little to no money?

However, they run for a public office hence they are political. They try to influence voters or other members of a governing body to vote for their ideas, you cannot argue this.  It is absurd to say that someone is political on a governing body, but the rest are not.

Best Regards,
Tracy Brown Hellmann

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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Domestic violence is prevalent in Macoupin County

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Dear Editor,

Domestic Violence within Macoupin County is prevalent. It is destructive and can be both physical and psychological. It can affect anyone of any age, gender, race, or sexual orientation. It may include behaviors meant to scare, physically harm, or control a partner. While every relationship is different – domestic violence generally involves an unequal power dynamic in which one partner tries to assert control over the other in a variety of ways. The following statistics are all according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.

We can see domestic violence inside the home: through the use and control of household pets. In one study, 85% of survivors who experienced co-occurring animal abuse reported that the behavior of their pets had changed. An even higher percentage of survivors who reported partners had harmed or killed their pet, have also reported their partner for domestic violence. We can also see an increase usage of firearms within the intimate partner violence home. A survey of contacts by the National Domestic Violence Hotline found (of those with access to firearms):  

  • 10% said their abusers had fired a gun during an argument.  
  • 67% believed their abusers were capable of killing them. 

We can see domestic violence inside our schools: as partner violence is not exclusive to the home. There are many instances of violence between dating partners that begin in high school. Nearly 1.5 million high school students in the United States are physically abused by dating partners every year. Within those relationships, 13.4% of male high school students report being physically or sexually abused by a dating partner.  

We can see domestic violence inside our community: Macoupin County provides a specific set of needs for those victims and survivors of domestic violence. There are several complex concerns within a violent relationship that come to light once action has been taken. Safe Families sees a few main re-occurring concerns within the county:  

  • Survivors have fewer financial resources, making them more financially dependent on an abusive partner.  
  • The lack of rental units or other affordable housing options makes it more difficult for survivors to leave spouses or co-habiting abusers.  

The Macoupin County Safe Families program provides support for residents as they journey the emotional endeavors to leave behind domestic violence. As a contributor to that experience, we will be hosting a Domestic Violence Awareness Walk on October 7th on the Carlinville Square. An event shirt will be included with a ticket sale. The online tickets will close 09/29 at 5pm. Tickets will be sold at 9am day-of event at the Safe Families booth. More information about the Awareness Walk can be found on our website at mcphd@mcphd.net. We urge Macoupin County residents to join us and rally against domestic violence together.  

Juliet Wooldridge and Lilly Booth

Domestic Violence Advocate Coordinators
Community Health Worker
Macoupin County Safe Families

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Letters to the Editor

Letter: National Health Center Week is week of August 6

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Dear Editor,

Community Health Centers are the backbone of our nation’s primary health care system. We design innovative, integrated primary care based on what services communities need most — ensuring access to affordable, quality healthcare for over 30 million people. In addition to creating jobs and saving lives, collectively we save American taxpayers $24 billion a year in health care costs by preventing and managing chronic diseases.

Community Health Centers are not ordinary medical clinics; we are also problem-solvers who reach beyond the exam room to care for the whole person by providing access to necessities like food, transportation, and housing. Community Health Centers care for everyone, regardless of insurance status. Nationwide during hurricanes, floods, and fires, and locally during the pandemic, Community Health Centers are first on the scene and are vital to keeping America healthy.

The 2023 theme of National Health Center Week is ‘The Roadmap to a Stronger America.’ Community Health Centers serve as the beacon of strength, service, and care in their communities. In moments of pain and loss, we offer support and love. In moments of triumph, we offer hope and a vision for the future. This year’s National Health Center Week theme takes us on a virtual road trip across America, highlighting the achievements and amazing work being done at Community Health Centers in every state and territory. Celebrate the uniqueness of our community and get to know others as we journey across the U.S. together!

Each day of National Health Center Week is dedicated to a particular focus area. We will be working with community partners to recognize and celebrate each of the following focus groups in our community.

As part of National Health Center Week 2023, we invite you to support Macoupin Community Health Centers, Inc. to celebrate our mission and accomplishments.

Christy Blank
CEO/Public Health Administrator
Macoupin Community Health Centers, Inc.
Macoupin County Public Health Department

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Letters to the Editor

Letter: Drobney family thanks the community

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To the great people of Macoupin County.

Although several months have past, the family of Bridget Drobney would like to extend their deepest gratitude for the overwhelming love and support that we received during the recent attempt to secure the release of one of Bridget’s rapist/murderers. We are truly grateful for the numerous letters that were written and sent to the Governor of our state, the Illinois Prison Review Board, and the personal outreach to our family; all of which demonstrated your unwavering love and support. Your efforts were instrumental in persuading the Governor and members of the Prison Review Board to deny clemency for Bridget’s murderer.

While it remains a possibility for the individuals involved in Bridget’s kidnapping, rape and murder to annually petition for clemency, The Drobney family takes solace in knowing that the exceptional people of Macoupin County will steadfastly oppose any such requests and stand ready to fight should the matter of clemency arise again. We are particularly grateful to retired Macoupin County State’s Attorney, Vincent Moreth, as well as the current members of the Macoupin County State’s Attorney’s Office, under the leadership of State Attorney, Jordan Garrison. Their unwavering dedication and support was evident as they traveled to Chicago to represent Bridget and the Drobney family during the clemency hearing.

Once again, we express our sincerest appreciation for your profound support and unwavering commitment to justice. Your solidarity has been a source of strength for us during these difficult years. We will keep you in our prayers and will be forever grateful to the people of Macoupin County.

Sincerely,
The Drobney Family

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