HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Leaders across the state are vowing to show more respect to each other during public discussions.
More than 90 leaders from about 60 municipalities signed the pledge, which calls for “respecting others and their viewpoints and finding solutions for betterment of community.”
The Connecticut Conference of Municipalities organized the pledge in response to increasing tensions — and even violent outbursts — at public meetings.
Last year, a member of the Glastonbury board of education was punched by anti-mask protestors who disrupted a roundtable discussion in Cheshire.
It’s an issue that may be driving people out of participating in public office.
“From an electorate standpoint, it causes good people to shy away from engaging,” said Joe DeLong, the CEO of the Connecticut Conference of Municipalities. “You have have out there that would otherwise maybe like to engage in a town meeting, would like to show up and express a viewpoint. They see what happens there, and they say, ‘I’m not getting in the middle of that dialogue.'”