I have lived in the Charlotte area for about 7 years, but I had not heard of the Citizens Review Board until recently. Matt Newton, one of Democracy North Carolina’s big supporters in the area, is leading the campaign to give the Citizens Review Board the power to actually do the job it’s been tasked to do. Recently, the Democracy Summer Charlotte Team took this on as our summer research project and we have been making big strides. I had the wonderful opportunity to sit down with Matt Newton and the Creative Loafing political reporter, Michael Cooper, to discuss how we should move forward with this issue in the press. Matt is more seasoned in the communications area and I learned from his approach of talking to the press. The next day we attended an ACLU meeting which focused on the Citizens Review Board, and Matt Newton was part of a panel that discussed the issue. During the panel, it was nice to see many of the attendees engaging and asking questions.
Local advocates are gearing up for a fight for reform as the last few public hearings happen. It has been a great experience so far being involved in something that is actually going to help many Charlotteans.
Vibhav Kollu – Charlotte Team