“The pen is mightier than the sword” was proven when two letters delayed a multimillion dollar project.
I take full responsibility for writing to the provincial Ministry of the Environment, expressing my concern about the effect the increased traffic lanes and stop lights would have on the air quality in a densely populated residential area.
More than 100 children walk to and from Adamsdale public school every day. Second Avenue borders on a very active neighbourhood playground.
I work, pay my taxes, go to church, volunteer in the community, say hello to my neighbours, and enjoy a quiet life. I mind my own business.
But when I realized that our community is possibly putting children’s lives and future at risk by making an impulsive decision without proper consideration, I stepped up to the plate.
I saw a public notice published in our two local newspapers, advising that the construction plan for Second Avenue would be put for tender unless the Ministry of the Environment was notified of concerns before May 16.
I knew our community needed more time and a chance to consider other options before we committed to costs that we might not be able to afford and/or that might be harmful to the children that live in the area, use the roadway daily to walk to school and play at Adamsdale playground.
Like many, I enjoy The Simpsons, especially the simple, down-to-earth logic Marge Simpson uses to solve chaotic/out of control situations. Like Marge Simpson, I believe that one person can make a positive difference if the motives have merit and there is sufficient community support.
Obviously my concerns had merit or the ministry would not have responded as they did.
I am working with city staff to prepare a public presentation for the Minnow Lake CAN meeting scheduled for Aug. 14, 2014 at 7 p.m. at the Legion Hall on Weller Street in Minnow Lake.
The presentation will provide a cost comparison for four options that could address the traffic flow problems on Second Avenue. The “cost” will include dollars and cents as well as environmental, social and health “costs.”
If the fact that I wrote to the Provincial Ministry of the Environment in response to a published invitation makes me an activist, so be it.
If advocating for children places me in the “eye of the storm” of debate and criticism, I will stand steadfast to my values and convictions.
If I make the difference in one child’s life, I am honoured to have been of service.
Dorothy (Dot) Klein
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