LETTER: Port not living up to diversity goals or strategic plan values

To Ozaukee Press:

The City of Port Washington’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee was established on Oct. 20, 2020, by Mayor Marty Becker. The purpose of this committee was to “review city policies, procedures and practices with a focus on diversity and inclusion regardless of race, color, ethnicity, religion, national origin, gender identity, marital or familial status, immigration status, sexual orientation, age, economic status, disability and other individual identities” and to make recommendations to promote a “culture that values diversity and inclusion.”

The new Port Washington strategic plan’s core values, approved by the Common Council on March 1, 2022 are accountability, innovation, trustworthiness, industriousness and friendliness.

With the committee and the strategic plan in place, one would believe Port Washington is a city that honors the values they represent. Yet the committee has not met since January 2022.

The people of Port Washington have been let down by what is not happening with the committee, as well as by the failure to adhere to the core values of the strategic plan.

Many of us believe inclusion should play a vital role in this city. We are committed to providing a safe and an equitable environment for all and fostering a mindset of empathy, respect and belonging. By respecting each person’s unique identity and perspective, we create a stronger community. We honor differences, including races and cultures, genders and sexualities, abilities and aspirations, identities and affiliations, socioeconomics and worldviews.

Why is the Common Council not holding Mayor Ted Neitzke and City Administrator Tony Brown accountable to the diversity committee?

One only needs to look at websites of many other cities our size to see that diversity and inclusion are true priorities. Why not Port Washington? The phrasing of the original resolution, along with the strategic plan, are all words at this point. Where are the commitments, responsibilities, actions and fortitude?

Pat Morrissey

Port Washington


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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
(262) 284-3494


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