How we can assist refugee families relocating to Orange County

As many of us in Orange County continue to reel from the recent election and are afraid of what might happen under a, shudder, Trump presidency, we’d like to share some things that we can do to help our neighbors, particularly those most likely to be marginalized – especially under a new administration.

Those who work with refugee populations in Orange County are hearing from their national networks to prepare for total shutdown of refugee resettlement programs and related federal funding under the coming administration. Currently, however, we have welcomed a number of refugees into Orange County. The Director of the Refugee Support Center in Carrboro reports that there are currently 5 families from Syria in Orange County, with a total of 32 individuals. Arrivals started slowly this past summer. From July through the end of November, 69 refugees from the following countries have arrived in Orange County: Congo, Burma, Iraq, and Syria.

The Freedom to Bike and Walk

A new column in the Chapel Hill News by OP Editors Molly De Marco and Travis Crayton and Seth LaJeunesse calls for improved bike and pedestrian infrastructure that prioritizes people over cars. Read the column below:

 

Bike lane on Rosemary Street

Recently, each of us has had opportunities to travel to other cities and get a feel for how people move through different environments to get from place to place. All of us recently used Capital Bikeshare in Washington, D.C., and one of us also used bikeshare programs in New York City and Denver.

Through these experiences, one thing became clear: You learn more about traffic and safety from a bicycle seat – or as a pedestrian, for that matter – than you do from the seat of a car.

What will the election mean for our communities?

The Mayors of Carrboro, Hillsborough and Chapel Hill and the Chair of the Orange County Board of Commissioners put out a joint statement to the community on the 2016 Presidential Election. The text of their letter is below.

Just what the election means for our community is yet to be fully known and may not for some time, but local efforts are underway to anticipate issues before they arise and respond.

For example, El Centro Hispano-Carrboro will be holding a community forum on Tuesday, November 22nd at 6:30 pm to discuss what the election might mean for immigrant communities. The location is to be determined. We will post the location in the thread when it is announced.

Know of other community activities being planned in response to the election? Please comment and share it.

Post Date: 11/14/2016 10:49 AM

 

An Open Letter to Orange County Residents:

 

Like many, since Election Day we have reflected on what our country’s presidential election will mean for our communities.

 

The Real Reason Chapel Hill Keeps Growing

{Cross Posted from Chapelboro.com}

Chapel Hill resident, Matt Bailey, is back. This time he's rejecting the notion that Chapel Hill should or even can stay the same. Check out his thoughts below. Do you agree?

A while back, I read an opinion piece about how Chapel Hill was so much better back in the good old days. How Chapel Hill used to be smaller. How Chapel Hill used to have more charm. How all these new places for people to live have ruined our sense of place.

These sentiments aren’t merely one person’s opinion. Seems you only have to be in Chapel Hill for fifteen minutes before someone tells you how great it was back in some bygone era.

It’s true that Chapel Hill was a whole lot smaller years ago. In 1960, 12,573 lived here. Today, 59,568 do. However, have you ever stopped to ask yourself why Chapel Hill has grown so much?

White House Calls for Increased Density to Address Housing Affordability

The latest column in the Chapel Hill News by OrangePolitics Editors Travis Crayton and Molly De Marco cites recent releases from the White House calling for increased density in urban development to address the chronic national problem of housing affordability. These are just the type of strategies that we have been supporting on this blog for Orange County.

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