Merced’s teens can help solve city’s problems.

I was very proud to co-lead the recent mayoral candidate forum that was supported by Merced Organizing Project and Building Healthy Communities Merced. I believe in my city and I want to help Merced. That’s why it was important for me to participate.

I heard a lot of ideas from the candidates. Police and youth relationships need to improve, there’s no doubt about that. But one thing made clear by the youth was that our experiences and concerns need to be included in any solution that our city comes up with to address community issues. We have a stake in this, too, and the forum showed that youth are coming up with our own ways to be involved.

We are young and have many ideas to share with elected officials. Thank you to the mayoral candidates, Necola Adams, Noah Lor, Mike Murphy and Josh Pedrozo for taking the time and listening to young people. It’s a step in the right direction.