Issues of racial justice took center stage at Tuesday’s Carrboro Town Council meeting.
Council member Barbara Foushee started the meeting with a tribute to the Black Lives Matter movement’s surge in recent months.
“We are in search of action, not words, for there is still so much work to be done,” Foushee said. “I’m raw, I’m angry, some days I’m even afraid.”
Afterward, Mayor Lydia Lavelle suggested mandating a certain number of minority members for appointments to Town committees. A decision was made to hold appointment hiring until diversity in the applicant pool was increased.
The rest of the meeting focused on a proposed mural and changing the namesake of the town.
In the parking lot outside of the Carrboro Town Hall, the proposed mural would read “End Racism Now.” This mural had previously been approved by the council, but there were new disagreements over both the location of this mural and its message.
Community organizer Quinton Harper said he was disappointed that the mural did not read “Black Lives Matter” and then later responded to a comment from council member Susan Romaine, who said such a statement may be seen by some as too polarizing and political.
“Susan, my existence is political," Harper said. "Every day I wake up, it’s politics … Not seeing the term ‘Black Lives Matter’ means I am not seeing anything that affirms my life matters.”
The council then passed a motion to discuss other areas for murals. Council member Jacquelyn Gist proposed an amendment to focus on places where murals could go up with minimal delay.