Laurels & lances: Counseling, foreclosure and mobility
Laurel: To helping kids cope. There are things that you might expect at a Friday night football game. Zealous fans. Uncomfortable bleachers. Both sides mad at the referees. What you don’t expect is a man being gunned down outside the field. That happened last week at McKee Stadium.
Jeannette City School District was proactive about helping students. It partnered the district psychologist with counselors from surrounding schools and the Westmoreland County Disaster Crisis and Outreach Referral Team.
Jeannette Superintendent Matthew W. Jones said his counterparts at Franklin Regional, Greensburg Salem, Yough, Clairton and Norwin all contacted him immediately to extend help.
It is easy to focus on the rivalries of football season. In times of need, it’s good to know support is also a team sport.
Lance: To letting our heroes down. Verdant Holdings LLC and Carlisle businessman David H. Goldsmith failed to get started on transforming the former SCI Greensburg prison site into a veterans center before running afoul of two banks moving to foreclose on the property.
It’s bad enough for the veterans who won’t get help. What is worse is that the state gave him $7.6 million of taxpayer money as part of a 20-year contract to provide electricity at the prison through a steam energy plant.
Laurel: To opening pathways to everyone. Pennsylvania has beautiful green spaces and oodles of areas to appreciate nature through hiking, biking and more. Unless, that is, you are one of the many residents who deal with mobility challenges. A rocky path can be exhausting for an able individual, but for someone in a wheelchair, it’s impossible.
At least it is without something like the Universal Pedestrial Trail in Murrysville being opened by the Westmoreland Conservancy.
“Too often people with mobility issues are overlooked when it comes to outdoor opportunities and the conservancy means to remedy that,” said Rob Malley, a conservancy board member.