By Carol Britton Meyer
Through a citizen's petition, the Hingham League of Women Voters is proposing a warrant article for Town Meeting 2021 that calls for amending the town's general by-laws to include gender-neutral terms.
The League believes such changes are in the best interests of the town, supporting equity for all citizens, elected officials, and staff and recognizing the many contributions women have made to civic life in Hingham.
Hingham would join more than 90 other Massachusetts communities who now use the term "select board" or other similar terms rather than "selectmen" if the article passes.
Milton and Scituate made that same change along with all gender-neutral terms, which is what the LWV is proposing for Hingham.
The word "chairman" would be changed to "chair" or "chairperson," and the words "he" and "she," "his" and "hers," and "him" and "her" wherever they appear in the general by-laws would be replaced with the words "they," "their," or "them" -- among other proposed changes.
The warrant article calls for the switch to gender-neutral terms in all currently active Town of Hingham communications and documents such as policies, regulations, and rules "where reasonably practical" and in all future town communications and documents.
"A cooperative effort is implied," Hingham LWV member Liza O'Reilly said recently. "There is no specific deadline or penalty."
By Carol Britton Meyer
Interim Police Chief David P. Jones -- a longtime Hingham resident who went through the Hingham Public Schools -- was named permanent chief by the selectmen this week.
Jones said he has aspired to become chief since he first joined the Hingham Police Department 20 years ago and looks forward "to serving this vibrant community and our dedicated team of Hingham police officers and staff as chief and ensuring that residents of all walks of life feel safe in our town."
Jones was the only candidate to apply for the position during an internal search. He replaces former Chief Glenn Olsson, who retired last year, and has served as patrolman, sergeant, lieutenant, and deputy chief during his long career with HPD in addition to interim chief for the past six months.
Selectmen Chair Mary Power and fellow Selectmen Joseph Fisher and William Ramsey pointed to Jones' willingness to learn and grow, strong leadership and budget administration skills, diligence, compassion, and his dedication to the community as among his many strengths.
Congratulations, Chief Jones!
By: Carol Britton Meyer
In the midst of all of life's challenges, and during the cold winter month of February, comes Valentine's Day -- a holiday that is sure to hold special meaning this year.
There is no better time to express extra appreciation for our frontline workers -- from nurses and doctors to grocery store clerks and restaurant staff -- and for everyone else in our lives whom we care about and who has helped us get through these unusual times.
Family, friends, an acquaintance, a teacher or co-worker, someone we may not have met before who crosses our path in a local shop -- all can be on the receiving end of our expression of caring and love on this special day.
Sending flowers, offering a helping hand, creating a colorful handmade greeting card, giving a friendly smile, and voicing words of praise are some of the ways we can celebrate Valentine's Day.
In the words of a familiar poet and playwright and of a well-known philosopher:
"Who, being loved, is poor?" -- Oscar Wilde
"At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet." -- Plato
Wishing you and yours a Happy Valentine's Day
By Carol Britton Meyer
Here's a fun way to support Hingham restaurants during these challenging times!
After reading a Hingham Hub post in early January encouraging families to support struggling local restaurants by ordering takeout, Hingham resident Amy Cowan created "TakeOut Tuesday" to help make that happen.
It's also a way for busy people, especially families, to take a break from the usual mid-week challenge, "What's for dinner tonight?" and order out.
Noting that many families already have a Friday pizza night or Saturday date night tradition, Cowan thought Tuesday would be a good day to help busy families with their dinner plans and for them to join others in a show of support for their favorite eateries -- and also for new restaurant ideas they discover through the TakeOut Tuesday initiative.
Hingham graphic designer Michele Friedman donated her time and talent to create a compelling logo.
This is how TakeOut Tuesday works:
* Order one meal for your family from a restaurant
* Post on Facebook and Instagram to help spread the word
* Use the hashtag #takeouttuesdaysouthshore so that others can find your post and to make the search for new takeout ideas easier for others
* Include a hashtag with the name of your restaurant of choice or a link to its website.
* Encourage friends to participate.
With widespread community support, this effort will be successful and make a difference, Cowan said. "We encourage Hingham families to give our many different restaurants a try."