Monroeville Dems, GOP butt heads over blood drive
Members of the Monroeville Democratic and Republican committees were at odds last week over a proposed blood drive at Gateway High School.
Gateway Superintendent Nina Zetty denied a request from the Monroeville Republican Committee to hold a blood drive Nov. 2, the day before the general election. An email from Zetty to school district officials cited district Policy 321 — which states “school property and school time, paid for by all the people, may not be used for political purposes” — and Policy 913, which prohibits events on school grounds that “promotes, favors or opposes the candidacy of any political candidate for election.”
Zetty said at the Sept. 25 school board meeting that the event would create the perception of support for a particular political party.
“Pick any other day after Election Day, and it's not a problem,” Zetty said.
Republican Committee Chairman Chad Stubenbort argued that the blood drive would not be a political rally with signs and fliers but instead an opportunity to “show that the committee is doing good in the community.”
For every 50 units of blood donated under Gateway's name, the Central Blood Bank would award a Gateway senior a scholarship for up to $3,000, Stubenbort said.
School director Jan Rawson, who is chairwoman of the Monroeville Democratic Committee, said the timing of the blood drive is questionable.
“If you would hold this after Election Day, I would gladly come and help you,” Rawson said. “I just think the timing is poor, and it's kind of a conflict for me to vote “yes” on this. I have to consider my (2013) candidates.”
There was no actual board vote on the request. The denial was an administrative decision that Zetty made.
Stubenbort said it's hypocritical for district officials to set a precedent by allowing a church to hold services at Gateway Middle School on Sundays and then deny a political party from holding a community event.
Rawson pointed out that she voted against the church services at the middle school.
Stubenbort said that logistically, the event could be held after Election Day, but “to hold an event like this would gain some PR for us.”
“I'm sure it would,” Rawson responded. “I'm sure that's the purpose.”
Rawson said that allowing a Republican blood drive would call into question her allegiance to her own political party.
“You being the Republican chairman, and me being the Democratic chairwoman, you should understand my views that (the blood drive) will call attention to your Republican candidates. I have to look after mine.”
Five of the eight school directors who were at the meeting last week are members of the Democratic committee, and one is a member of the Republican committee.
As of Monday, the blood drive tentatively was scheduled for Nov. 2 at the Monroeville Public Library, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., pending approval by the Central Blood Bank.
Kyle Lawson is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8755, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Report: Shoddy computer security allowed access for nebbing in Monroeville
- Monroeville police asked to crack down on panhandlers
- Officials eye remedy for collapsed pipe that caused Monroeville flood
- PennDOT deal clears way for Monroeville road repairs
- Photo gallery: Safety Day in Pitcairn
- Photo gallery: Steel City Con geeks up Monroeville Convention Center