Mechanicsburg declared International City of Peace

By Christopher Selmek - Staff writer

Mayor Greg Kimball signed a proclamation declaring Mechanicsburg an International City of Peace at the regular council meeting Oct. 16. The proclamation was initiated by Champaign County Peace Alliance member Debbie Walters in honor of the 1980 United Nations resolution declaring Sept. 21 of each year an International Day of Peace, which she said had grown to become a day of global celebration, education, reflection and peace in local communities throughout the world.

“On this great day it was my privilege to actually submit Mechanicsburg as a city of peace, and the reason being is I have been fighting for peace for a long time with the Champaign County Peace Alliance, and this was one of the things I wanted to get accomplished this year,” she said. “There are 182 cities of peace in 46 countries and six continents and it starts with one person, and I was the person to get this one going. Did you know Dayton, Ohio was the first International City of Peace, Springfield is 123, Urbana is 140, and we are 174? No city is 100 percent peace. It’s just a path of becoming more of a peaceful city.”

Walters noted that Mechanicsburg residents rallied around escaped slave Addison White in 1856. She said this was one reason she submitted Mechanicsburg for this honor. She said the village also is deserving because of the Life Skills program started last year at Mechanicsburg Middle School, in which students discuss resolving conflicts and coping with anger.

Kimball added that the village’s school resource officer is a part of the life skills program, and that the village is proud of its involvement.

Walters then read the proclamation.

“To the extent that the citizens of Mechanicsburg, Ohio desire human security and to live in peace, and whereas economic security requires an assured basic income from productive work; and whereas food security requires a physical and economic access to basic food; and whereas health security aims to guarantee minimum protection from diseases and a healthy lifestyle; and whereas environmental security aims to protect people from the short and long-term ravages of natural threats and environmental deterioration; and whereas personal security aims to protect people from physical violence and exploitation; and whereas community security aims to protect people from the loss of traditional relationships and values as well as ethnic violence; and whereas political security is concerned with the right of people to live in a society that honors their basic human rights; and whereas an awareness of nonviolent principles and practices is a powerful way to heal and transform our lives and communities; to recognize the dignity and worth of every human being, and to promote peace and harmony among all people regardless of their perceived differences; and whereas a culture of peace is determined by the citizens of each community; and whereas we will benefit from democratic participation, and whereas we intend to foster a culture of peace through education and action.”

In other matters:

– The council heard the third and final reading of the ordinance to approve the agreement between the council and the Board of Trustees of Goshen Township relating to land belonging to Advanced Technology Products. The council unanimously voted in favor of the agreement.

– Village Administrator April Huggins Davis said the water main project had been completed with only a few loose ends. She said the asphalt in front of the school was not up to village standards, and the contractor was requiring the company to come back and make repairs at their own expense.

– The Lions Club will host a Meet the Candidates event on Oct. 30 at 7 p.m. at the Mechanicsburg United Methodist Church. There are six candidates running for school board, and two incumbents running for three seats on the council. The council is accepting applications and resumes immediately from any Mechanicsburg resident interested in applying for the vacant seat.

By Christopher Selmek

Staff writer

Christopher Selmek can be reached at 937-652-1331

Christopher Selmek can be reached at 937-652-1331