Last Friday (1/20/2012), DWEJ President & CEO Guy Williams went on the Craig Fahle Show with University of Detroit Mercy’s Dan Pitera, who is in charge of the Detroit Works Project Long Term Engagement Process (DWPLTEP), to talk about why DWEJ is involved in this process, and discuss the DWP’s new Home Base for civic engagement.
Interview link: RADIO INTERVIEW
The DWPLTEP is led by a small group of community stakeholders called “Process Leaders,” who are helping to design what civic engagement should look like and feel like for DWP Long Term Planning.
Some key points from the interview:
- The idea of the Home Base (at Eastern Market) is to give DWP Long Term Planning a physical presence to get first-hand information.
- Guy acknowledges that there was great disappointment with process before. New phase of the project is focused on getting the most information out to the most people possible through various means.
- DWEJ believes it is most important for people to be able to speak for themselves on crucial issues of policy and have a high degree of self determination around shaping their own communities. As well as being very invested in communities having a high quality of life, particularly from a health and safety perspective, and environmental concerns.
- Importance of face-to-face communication regarding DWP, as well as an understanding of how that input will be incorporated – as opposed to an official statement.
- Guy points out that there are diverse activities going on – relates to responsiveness of current plan to complaints about plan earlier. A lot of going out to the community as well as providing a permanent home base for people to go to. Also visualizing how the information is being digested on an incremental basis.
- This particular relaunch of DWP has only been going for two months (as of January 26, 2012). But it’s not a restart, it incorporates all of the previous input.
- Guy acknowledges substantive and correct criticism of the process before relaunch, but adds that DWEJ believes in being part of the solution. The DWP leadership has been responsive, and it’s a living process.