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Support Option 3
On April 17, at 1:30 p.m., the Chippewa County Commissioners are meeting in the Commissioners Room at the Chippewa County Courthouse to redistrict the commissioner districts in Chippewa County.

This is  very important for all Chippewa County residents as this meeting designates your commission district for the next 10 years.

The residents of Kragero Township and the city of Milan, after researching and studying the four possible options presented by the commissioners, have picked, passed resolutions, and advocate the adoption of Option 3.

Option 3 transfers two townships, Woods and Havelock, into different commissioner districts and the remaining townships would remain in their present districts. The reasons that Option 3 was chosen are to maintain traditional relationships among townships, services provided and shared, similar needs, and equality in size.

If Kragero Township and city of Milan are combined with Sparta, Sparta’s township population is double that of Kragero and Milan; a distinct disadvantage to the smaller township and city. Option 3 requires the least change and maintains the electoral balance of power. Residents of Chippewa County, please tell your elected officials which option you want.

Remember, this important decision, which will affect your local government for the next 10 years, is vital. Share your feelings with your commissioner.

—Mayor Ted Ziemann
—Supervisor Greg Norby
Kragero Township

Assistance appreciated
I would like to commend the Montevideo Police Department secretary, Tasha Hagen, for helping find my lost purse.

Thursday afternoon she took my information and called Walmart security. I had already checked at customer service and they didn’t have my purse. Later, Tasha received a call from Walmart security that they had my purse with all contents — cash, debit card, driver’s license, cell phone, etc.

Thanks to the Police Department, Tasha Hagen, and Walmart security.

—Marjorie Hegna
Granite Falls

As American  as apple pie
If you have never heard of VAWA, please read on. It is an important part of our legislation coming up for reauthorization.

VAWA - The Violence Against Women Act (S. 1925) – now has 61 bipartisan sponsors including Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Sen. Al Franken. There are fewer than a dozen bills in Congress right now that have this type of bipartisan support.

In 1994, the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) was a giant step forward for our nation and the Act is overdue for reauthorization. Yet, Senator Reid has yet to call it to the floor.

VAWA is responsible for funding and facilitating the work of thousands of people who shelter, counsel, advise and advocate for victims of intimate partner violence. And despite its name, VAWA supports men, as well.

Some conservative legislators are reportedly against VAWA (S. 1925) because it would extend a few more U-visas to abused immigrant women; cover people in same-sex relationships; and enhance funding for community-based programs that directly address people of color.

As an advocate for victims of domestic abuse in Chippewa and Lac qui Parle counties, I have learned so much and seen first-hand the devastating results from intimate partner violence, and how widespread it is, right here, in our own communities.

Since VAWA first passed in 1994, the number of individuals killed by an intimate partner has decreased by 34 percent for women and 57 percent for men. VAWA saved lives while saving $12.6 billion in its first six years.

As a nation, do we really want to say, “There are too many victims” or “You are not the ‘right kind’ of victim.”?

In the words of one U.S. Representative who shared some of her personal history as a survivor of sexual assault and teen rape, “It (violence) knows no gender. It knows no ethnicity. It knows nothing … and I’ll tell you … violence against women is as American as apple pie.”

Just as apple pie is enhanced by the mixture of different spices, fruit varieties, colors and textures, our nation is enhanced by the mixture of people – different ages, genders, cultures, beliefs, etc.

All victims of domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking deserve help, regardless of their age, gender, race, citizenship, sexuality, or faith.

That is what VAWA S. 1925 does.

You can help by asking your representatives to support S. 1925.

—Judy Swenson