An unexpected closure is catching the Eugene community off guard. The Eugene Hearing and Speech Center shut its doors Friday and laid off more than a dozen
This past weekend, after eighteen hours of training, that began on Friday morning at 9 A.M. sharp at Eugene’s Fire Department Training Facility in Eugene – twenty plus students all veteran CERT Trainers except for two of us myself and a friend from the Sheriff’s Search and Rescue Unit and Commander of Central Aid Agency, all came together as an entire unit of instructors taking FEMA’s Train The Trainer (TTT) Course for the Eugene-Springfield Community Emergency Response Team.
What was interesting was the instructors that taught the class were from Polk County, Oregon, CERT Team just outside of Salem, Oregon. The four, Kimber, Dell, Dave and Wendy all threw their knowledge, experience and awesome instruction on how CERT Trainers should be teaching the basic CERT Training to their students.
We all learned the right and wrongs and what to improve during our training and learned about ourselves along the way, as well..
For some of us, we’ve never taught a CERT class full of students, but we learned in front of our own peers and colleagues along the way – that there was no easy way out, we all had to learn how to trust our own instincts and fears – at the end we actually found out, “we could actually do this!” I said to myself, late Sunday night after getting some much needed sleep from three days of eight to nine hours for a total of 18 hours of classroom lecture and lab work with the two “teach-backs” as they are called – I came out learning from the best that have been traveling the state teaching other CERT Teams around the state of Oregon the same things they were teaching us in Eugene-Springfield CERT.
It could get any better than that. It was awesome and a lot of fun – I’m actually looking forward in teaching those in the community what it’s like to a prepared member of CERT and what they can do to help their communities, neighbors and family in the event of a disaster or emergency.
There has been a new twist in the debate about the “No EmX banners” up on West 6th Street lately. The Lane County District Attorney’s Office decided to get involved and tell the public to cool it and the person who made the complaint about the banner, being strung up at a local business on the 6th Street is protected by the confidentiality to remain hidden behind the scenes.
Many residents and businesses in West Eugene are fairly being untreated with political satire in a campaign to move the EmX project forward without having a political fight.
However, the public is crying foul ball on the Lane D.A., Alex Gardner in protecting those filed the complaint. Many are watching what seems to be a back and forth soap opera between business, residents and the entire west Eugene neighborhood building a fight to stop building process of the project.
A recent television report on KEZI9 News Wednesday night revealed that the folks out westward ho are not the fearless type who’d step back without a fight. Many have recalled the fight twenty years ago, when the West Eugene Parkway was under serious debate between businesses and homeowners that would have created a nightmarish struggle to safe properties that were suspected to be razed or relocated during the building process of the parkway.
But, voters citywide put up the fight and told the city of Eugene countless times – “forget it, not in their backyards.”
Lane Transit District has had so many problems with it’s customer relations had routes have been cut and services reduced to where there is no weekend service on some routes and leaving those on weekends to seek public transportation elsewhere or walking distances to catch another nearby bus some four to six blocks away from their original starting points.
Voters are still having trouble understanding what the city council is trying to do with its future plans in luring a full service hospital in Eugene, as Peace Health that owns Sacred Heart Medical Center in downtown Eugene on the University of Oregon Campus has moved it’s hospital care and patient rooms over to Springfield along the Willamette River at what is now Sacred Heart at RiverBend.
With Springfield booming as a boom town by today’s standards, Eugene lacks a full service hospital and more “Urgent Care” facilities than a full service hospital with a full service Emergency Room – currently, SHMC University District on the University of Oregon Campus has a limited 24 hour emergency room and most urgent care patients are moved to Springfield to RiverBend.
Whatever Springfield is doing seems to be right at luring the right companies and businesses for its economy, while Eugene struggles to gain voter confidence and acceptance in creating a viable public transportation plan.
It only makes me wonder – how could the Eugene City Council not listen to the uproar among its own residents and how would the city’s founder, the late Eugene Skinner would feel about the way his city is going in today’s standards.