Letters to the Editor: June 3, 2023

Living three years now in the Miami Valley, I volunteered as a poll worker for every election, big and small. I applauded the legislature in banning August elections after 2022′s record-breaking, terrible turnout, costing Ohio $25 million — or $39 per voter who voted. Now, Gov. Dewine and the illegally-gerrymandered legislature want a special August election, violating their own law they just passed! Four former Ohio governors (D and R) oppose it. Like many Ohioans, I will be out of town (…and voting early). Need poll workers? Maybe my fellow Greene County resident Mike Dewine can man the polls in August, working the 14-hour shift (plus the three-hour training) for $136.50 and the gratitude of slimy legislators.

- Roger W. Anderson, Beavercreek

In August, we will vote whether or not to approve constitutional amendments by a 60% “supermajority.” I believe that it makes sense to vote “yes” on this because amending our constitution is important enough to make sure that we have the majority of our citizens in favor of a change. These days, we are so divisive that allowing a simple majority allows just over 1/2 of the people “getting their way”. We need to move away from making major changes with slim margins of approval. Even this change should require a 60% “supermajority” to be approved.

- Scott H. Graham, Centerville

The guest column on May 26 by Veronica Raussin of Addicted.org dealt with the impact drug addiction has among veterans. It was spot on, but the fact is, much of what she wrote applies to the greater community as well. She stated, “Families also play an essential role in supporting their loved ones.” She cited various resources for veterans, and I would like to add a local resource that others may not know about which is available to everyone, not just veterans. FOA Families of Addicts is celebrating its tenth year of helping fight the chaos addiction causes. Its mission is “To educate, empower and embrace families, friends and individuals struggling with addiction by providing support and promoting recovery”. The struggle families go through when a loved one is suffering from substance use disorder is largely overlooked by the care system. FOA fills that gap with weekly support meetings in 5 Ohio cities (and one in North Carolina), a helpline staffed by volunteers with lived experience, and more. This year, FOA will hold its 10th annual Rally 4 Recovery on Courthouse Square in Dayton on Sunday, August 27. This rally provides access to over 60 resources, showcases, and celebrates that recovery can and does occur, and helps destroy the stigma that prevents many people from dealing with addiction. Our website, FOAFamilies.org has more information. Raussin’s last sentence says it well – “It’s never too late to offer a helping hand.”

- Sandra Woodruff, President of FOA Board of Directors

At the age of 14, I was hired at a small dairy shop in my hometown. I quickly learned the importance of saving my hard-earned money and how much of my paycheck went directly to Uncle Sam. What I didn’t realize at the time, however, were the non-monetary benefits the job provided. Having a job at that age helped me to learn new skills and better understand the value of hard work, responsibility, and professionalism. We can now give Ohio pre-teens the same opportunity to expand their skills by passing Senate Bill 30, which will allow 14- and 15-year-olds, with parental consent, to work between the hours of 7:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. any time of year. We already permit pre-teens to participate in evenings sports and other extracurricular activities, so why wouldn’t we also allow them the chance to build their resume, acquire marketable skills, and earn money in a safe and law-abiding workplace? We should eliminate the current government barriers that prevent our young people from engaging in meaningful work and instead support their efforts to develop critical skills that will benefit them in all aspects of their lives.

- Donovan O’Neil, State Director, Americans for Prosperity-Ohio