[X-Posted from WillRaymond.org]

After 17 formal forums, neighborhood meetings, community picnics and other organized opportunities for candidates to meet and engage with our wider community, we ended this evening in the midst of community.

Tonight I witnessed the birth Orange County Justice United, a new umbrella organization comprised of 25 local advocacy, service and faith-based groups who are working together to improve the quality of life for all our town and county residents.

As part of that process, the new organization asked each of the Council candidates that attended to pledge to meet within 90 days to discuss a breadth of issues, including remedying the problems found during a recent census of the Northside/Pine Knolls communities (Orange County Justice United Northside/Pine Knolls Census).

While I applaud the formation of an organization dedicated to community service, I wish, as I said this evening to the 450+ assembled activists, they had organized a bit earlier in the campaign cycle in order to encourage a wider discussion of the challenges facing our people.

Simply put, this year’s focus has been more on houses than homes, more on begging hands than offering a hand up.

That said, tonight’s event was the best possible way I can imagine to finish this phase of the campaign.

Thank you Justice United for inviting me to participate.

What’s left then? Organizing folks to hand out materials election day (volunteer here), raise a few more hundred dollars (contribute here) and continue to work to get the message out that a vote for Raymond is a vote for beneficial change.

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