Woodstock Cultural and Social Awareness Commission discusses New Americans initiative
Woodstock Cultural and Social Awareness Commission met Monday, Jan. 9.
Here are the minutes as provided by Woodstock:
JOINT MEETING OF THE CULTURAL & SOCIAL AWARENESS COMMISSION
January 9, 2017
City Council Chambers
The Regular Meeting of the City of Woodstock Cultural & Social Awareness Commission was called to order at 4:04 PM on Monday, January 9, 2017 in the Council Chambers at City Hall.
I. CALL TO ORDER
II. ROLL CALL:
COMMISSION MEMBERS PRESENT: W. Donato, J. Hudson, I. Sagrado.
COMMISSION MEMBERS ABSENT: Jose Rivera.
STAFF PRESENT: Human Resources Director Debbie Schober and Chief Deputy City Clerk Jane Howie.
OTHERS PRESENT: None
III. PUBLIC COMMENTS
IV. ACCEPTANCE OF MINUTES: Motion by I. Sagrado, second by J. Hudson, to accept the Minutes from the October 3, 2016 meeting. Ayes: W. Donato, J. Hudson, and I. Sagrado. Nays: None. Absentees: Jose Rivera. Abstentions: None. Minutes accepted.
V. DISCUSSION ITEMS:
A. Sister City (Comm. Rivera)
Commissioner J. Rivera was absent.
B. Update on Old Firehouse Initiative (formerly Comm. Crain)
J. Hudson said the Old Firehouse Assistance Center is now open on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 9:00 AM until 3:00 PM.
“The Old Firehouse Assistance Center (OFAC) serves the homeless population of McHenry County, Illinois, by providing daytime shelter, meals, showers, haircuts, grooming supplies, social services, minor medical care, and other services. All of the services that we offer at the OFAC are designed to alleviate or eliminate the conditions that caused our guests to become homeless. Our ultimate goal is to locate permanent housing for each of our homeless guests.”
J. Hudson added that several local churches have partnered with the OFAC and mentioned that the First United Methodist Church is providing overnight accommodations on Saturdays from 7:00 PM – 7:00 AM on Sunday.
C. QPR training for community (formerly Comm. Crain, D. Schober can provide update) QPR = Question, Persuade, Refer. Scott Block, McHenry County Mental Health Board, along with efforts of the McHenry County Coroner, have been in touch with school counselors in Crystal Lake, Cary and McHenry. Counselors and Administrations have scheduled trainings; Director D. Schober will facilitate. D. Schober is hopeful that she can encourage Woodstock’s District 200 schools to get involved in the program, as it’s been embraced by counselors and administrators of neighboring districts.
D. Update on New Americans Initiative (formerly Comm. Crain)
No information is available at this time. J. Hudson asked what this Initiative involves. I. Sagrado believes this provides resources and assistance for people who want to become US citizens.
E. Other areas of focus within the Community (formerly Comm. Crain)
J. Hudson said the McHenry County observes Martin Luther King Junior Day on Monday, January 16th. There will be an Interfaith Prayer Breakfast at D.Andrea’s Banquet Hall in Crystal Lake on January 16, 7:30 AM. The event will reflect on one of Dr. King’s last speeches and several guest speakers will be included.
J. Hudson asked if this Commission should explore Sanctuary Cities. W. Donato looked this up on his phone and indicated the following “In the United States or Canada, a sanctuary city is a city that has adopted a policy of protecting undocumented immigrants by not prosecuting them for violating federal immigration laws in the country in which they are not living legally. Such a policy can be set out expressly in a law or observed only in practice. The term applies generally to cities that do not use municipal funds or resources to enforce national immigration laws, and usually forbid policy or municipal employees to inquire about a person’s immigration status. The designation has no precise legal meaning.” – taken from www.wikipedia.org D. Schober suggested Commissioners do some thorough research over the next couple of months and share their findings at this Commission’s next meeting this spring.
J. Hudson commented that there are 22 different languages spoken in Woodstock. Since Real Woodstock is so diverse, Real Woodstock may be interested in celebrating Woodstock’s diversity.
A discussion continued about the possibility of having a cultural event, of sorts. ‘Cultural Winter Festival’ – was in their notes from previous Chair L. Crain. D. Schober explained that creating an event is possible, but it takes a lot of volunteers, time and effort and must be planned months, if not a year in advance. Perhaps the event could be combined with, or be part of, another event.
F. Next Meeting date is Monday, April 3, 2017 at 4:00 PM
The next Joint Commission meeting will be held on Thursday, February 9th at 6:00 PM.
VI. OTHER DISCUSSION ITEMS:
D. Schober and Commissioners discussed setting up a table at the Groundhog Day event on Saturday, February 4th and selling the reusable bags for $5.00 each. Contact Jaci Krandel to organize.
Motion by I. Sagrado, second by J. Hudson, to adjourn this Quarterly Meeting of the Cultural & Social Awareness Commission. Ayes: W. Donato, J. Hudson, I. Sagrado. Nays: None. Absentees: Jose Rivera. Abstentions: None. Motion carried. Meeting adjourned 4:29 PM.
Chief Deputy City Clerk