The current version of the Fond du Lac County Board isn't ready to support a Countywide Diversity Initiative's statement of principles. It was standing room only Tuesday night as the board again considered whether to support the statement. In the end the board voted 12-to-6 to postpone indefinitely considering the issue. That followed some heartfelt speeches by 17 speakers on both sides of the issue.
County Executive Al Buechel says the idea of creating a more welcoming atmosphere would have helped out the business community. He says people will realize that when jobs are going elsewhere in the future. "We have to compete for employees all across globe, because people have choices," said Buechel. "It's not just about unskilled workers, this is about professional class people."
Some speakers felt it should be up to the business community and not county government to promote diversity. Supervisor Jim Kiser didn't think it was up to county government to tell people what they should value. He and others believed that it should be up to the business community to create a more welcoming atmosphere if they were worried about filling jobs in the future.
Buechel had a feeling the resolution would not pass, but hopes a future county board will make the right decision. "The reality of needing to compete on the global market has not sunk in yet, in this community," he said. "It will in the future." Some speakers were concerned about the term "sexual orientation" included in the statement of principles.