Who knew that Naperville has some deep-seeded diversity and inclusion issues that require hiring a diversity and inclusion manager. Wow, I didn’t see that coming over the last 42 years while I have lived in Naperville. I was busy buying into the idea that Naperville is family-friendly, with a booming economy, #1 rated school system, a library system second to none, and a vibrant downtown area attracting folks from a wide area.
Then bingo, a few idiots handle a couple of situations inappropriately at a restaurant, gas station, and school, and immediately city officials are jumping rope trying to find a problem requiring a so-called solution.
Naperville city officials are amazingly adept at defining a situation as a problem that needs fixing. A recent classic example of city officials overacting involved a resident who noticed a honeybee in her birdbath. The resident complained to the city council, and within a short period of time the council put numerous restrictions on beekeepers. However the restrictions resulted in a proliferation of beekeepers and their hives in Naperville. Local beekeeping associations have seen an increase in membership, so the over-reaction by city officials to squeeze honeybees and beekeepers worked in reverse.
The new position of manager for diversity and inclusion will come with a hefty salary of $100,000 plus or minus $10K, which in government usually means plus rather than minus. Somehow city officials have a difficult time finding a 10-cent per hour increase for the low wage earners, but can magically find 6-figure salaries for so-called “feel good” positions at the municipal center. In addition to ‘diversity and inclusion’ the new manager will work on fair housing so the city’s Human Rights Commission will now be known as the Human Rights and Fair Housing Commission. Looks like the extra two words ‘fair housing’ will justify the additional $10K in salary.