Dorman: Which politicians work for you?

Joe Dorman

The filing period for elected offices at the county, state, and federal levels is one week. Although we have some great choices, I would recommend not believing the courier only as advertised. I strongly encourage people to research candidates to determine which ones would best serve the policies most important to us.

From the beginning of our system of government, there has been distrust of politicians. In my opinion, many people group too many elected officials into one negative category. Many good leaders are unfairly blamed for the actions of others.

The Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy seeks to help people understand the work done by elected officials. Each year, we monitor legislation and work with legislators to support policies, improve ideas or voice opposition based on data and past experiences.

One of the most enjoyable parts of my job is working with legislators and agency heads. Getting to know them gives me hope that Oklahoma will emerge from the many dismal rankings we have for child and family well-being.

The men and women of the legislature and executive branch genuinely care about the voters, the state, and the nation, often from different angles. Building consensus and finding compromise when parties disagree are the foundations of our system. Unfortunately, “compromise” has become a dirty word in politics. Yet it is essential. We will never all agree on everything.

Last week, OICA commended lawmakers who voted in the best interests of children or who wrote important policies for young people. You can go to https://oica.org to view the 2021 scorecards and the 2022 Children’s Legislative Agenda.

While we do not endorse or support the nominees, we appreciate the work done by those who care about our state’s children.

OICA also thanks lawmakers for raising awareness about a critical issue: Adverse Childhood Experiences, or ACEs, and Protective and Compensatory Experiences, or PACEs. Lawmakers will recognize efforts to reduce childhood trauma at a ceremony on Thursday. We are happy to be part of the effort.

Finally, wear blue this month and post photos on social media to raise awareness of child abuse and prevention efforts. Together, we can all help improve our condition for children.

Joe Dorman is director of Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy.

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