Rockford residents speak out at the city’s final public listening session

Local citizens voice their concerns at Wednesday nights public listening session however Rockford officials assure residents the conversation isn’t stopping here.
Published: Jul. 8, 2020 at 11:55 PM CDT
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - The Rockford Community speaks out at the fourth and final public listening session Wednesday night.

“I don’t need to come here and listen to you,” said one Rockford resident. “I need to work with you. ‘How diverse is this city?’ See if you really want to do right then it does not require people coming down here for free telling you what to do. You’re gonna open up positions, you’re gonna let people in that have the expertise.”

These sessions were designed by the city as a way for people to voice their concerns and make suggestions for how to better the community.

“We’re not that community over there,” said one Rockford resident. “We vote in the same elections as you do. We pay the same taxes as you do. And we deserve the same rights as you do.”

However, not all residents came with the same message. Some spoke about recent gun violence and the lack of attention it received.

“Where was the Youth Activism and the other group and their protests about that?”, asked one Rockford resident.

City leaders say they’re ready to take the next steps with the community.

“As your elected officials we do listen and we want to take action on these items that they’re concerned about,” said Alderperson Joseph Chiarelli.

That action is what some residents say they’re more than ready for.

“I want a call or information about when these meetings will start where decisions are made because I want a seat at the table,” said one Rockford resident.

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