The AMENS group of Oak Park would like to congratulate the candidates who ran for office in the April election. It is a humbling and noble undertaking that requires sacrifice and a sense of community to pursue. Thanks also to the voters in the community who “walked the talk” by turning out, and by electing one of the more diverse panels of candidates, heretofore unheard of in our diverse quarters.

There were no losers in this election. Some candidates gained office, while others showed a spirit and vision that will surely enable them to have a stronger voice in future village deliberations. We are a better community because of the collaboration of voters, office-holders, and those who want a say in the body politic.

However, rejoice as we are wont, there is more work to be done. The election of fresh voices and vision must be aligned with community needs and realities. To name just a few:

•  additional support for start-up minority businesses

•  address renters’ issues in Oak Park

•  greater clarity regarding “re-imagining policing,” especially with regard to youth in Oak Park

• providing greater access to the Community Relations Commission by residents

It’s with a vision of the community greatness we’ve inherited, that we sing “hallelujah” in praise of the path upon which we have embarked. However, we reiterate the cliché that “it takes a village,” the whole village.

We’re here to affirm that we stand ready to do our part.

AMENS Group, Oak Park

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