Oregon Rural Congress lists guiding principles

The Oregon Rural Congress recently met in Cascade Locks to advance the voice of rural Oregon.   Here are the eight “Guiding Rural Principles” of the Oregon Rural Congress:

1.“Rural communities in Oregon, regardless of size and location, have a right to exist. Rural residents of these communities have a right to pursue their well-being.  State and federal government policies and programs must recognize local decision-making authority in pursuing the best interest of Eastern Oregon communities, their economic foundation and surrounding natural environment.

2. Community Leaders need to take the lead in identifying local needs and issues and defining the appropriate means of resolving these needs and issues.

3. Geographic, political and programmatic boundaries should not impede the ability of the leadership of Oregon’s rural communities to exercise their authority to accomplish locally-identified goals, objectives and strategies.

4. Policies and programs should recognize the uniqueness of each community
in terms of their human, social, economic, natural resources and assets to the fullest extent possible.

5. The rural-urban conversation must recognize that commonalities and differences are positive elements in the relationship among Oregon communities and strengthen the fabric of Oregon society.

6. Policies and programs must respect the history of each community in rural Oregon and the forces, internal and external, which have shaped the community.

7. Policies and programs impacting Oregon’s rural communities must be based on and shaped by the best available information and research with significant rural participation and input.

8. State and Federal policies and programs that require action must provide the resources to enhance the capacity of each community to address and direct change in the manner deemed most appropriate by community residents.”

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