Pottstown Councilor Trenita Lindsay and Mayor Stephanie Henrick attend Hill journalists’ press conference

Fourth+former+Hunter+Sloan+is+engaged+in+Councilor+Lindsay%E2%80%99s+take+on+COVID-19.+Photo+by+Noah+Toole+%E2%80%9822

Fourth former Hunter Sloan is engaged in Councilor Lindsay’s take on COVID-19. Photo by Noah Toole ‘22

Editor’s Note: On Oct. 7, Pottstown Mayor Stephanie Henrick and Councilor Trenita Lindsay spoke to Hill’s journalism class about local politics and life in a pandemic. Articles are in one document because they come from the same press conference but cover different topics within it. 

Pottstown Councilor Trenita Lindsay calls for the community to pay attention to history

By Izzy Feldman ’21 and Avery Liggon ’21

Pottstown Councilor Trenita Lindsay says Pottstown needs to “pay attention to history” in the context of the current global pandemic and social unrest. On Oct. 7, Hill students from Ms. DeOrnellas’ journalism class held a press conference with Councilor Lindsay and Mayor Stephanie Henrick of Pottstown. 

Councilor Lindsay spoke to the responsibility the Pottstown community has in abiding by health guidelines to end COVID-19 and in participating in allyship, beyond that of performance, to end the pandemic of systemic racism.  

As a self-proclaimed cheerleader of Pottstown, Lindsay views her position with high regard and passion, “monitoring and motivating people with positivity.”

When it comes to addressing the current global health crisis, Councilor Lindsay’s enthusiasm and persistence do not waver in her lively and seemingly holistic approach. Lindsay makes a concerted effort to educate the Pottstown community in a productive and inviting way, emphasizing the importance of masks to reduce the spread of COVID-19. 

Mayor Henrick further affirmed this notion of mask-wearing as important, explaining that she passed a mandate to require masks in the Pottstown community. 

In the press conference, Lindsay mentioned her hope to post signs around downtown Pottstown, further encouraging the wearing of masks. Her inspiration for this idea came from her travel to Key West. 

“I was in Key West, Fla., and they had this little sign where the masks say: ‘Mask up in Key West.’”

Both Lindsay and Henrick compared the different approaches being taken around the country, conversing with remote student Jason Zhou ’23 on the difference in response China had to COVID-1. Thus, suggesting that there were large contrasts between China and the United States. 

Lindsay added that she went to New Mexico during her socially distanced travel and that people were not wearing masks. They were saying that the pandemic was “a big hoax.”

Lindsay further remarked on topics which have been coined “twin pandemics,” applying the same measure of logic to COVID-19 and systemic racism in reiterating that we need to “pay attention to history.”

Lindsay believes that the acknowledgment of history and unified attempt in trying to learn from it will play an essential role in Pottstown’s ability to make progress in the face of these adversities. 

Therefore, suggesting that it was citizens’ previous unwillingness and incompetence in doing so that perpetuated this less-than-ideal positioning of which the community now finds itself.

“People don’t listen,” Lindsay said, “If we would have paid more attention to history, that wouldn’t have happened to George Floyd.”

Pottstown is a village, local officials say

By Rose Flaherty ’23, Emma Gray ’22 and Hunter Sloan ’23

Local officials are extremely proud to be in charge of the Borough of Pottstown. They believe that Pottstown is not like any other town, but rather is a village.

Pottstown Mayor Stephanie Henrick wanted “to give back to Pottstown when she finally found a home.” Whereas Pottstown Councilor Trenita Lindsay wanted to dedicate her time to Pottstown, more specifically advocating for lowering school taxes.  

On Oct. 7, Hill journalists held a press conference with Mayor Henrick and Councilor Lindsay. At the press conference, students gathered information on the pride these women feel toward Pottstown and their overall plans to better their community. 

Pride coming from the local politicians in Pottstown is hard to match. When a student asked Mayor Henrick her position on the protests held over the summer, specifically toward defunding the police, she responded, “I’m grateful that we don’t have those kinds of issues in our police department.” 

Both officials said they were pleased with the work of the police department and police chief. Councilor Lindsay shouted out the police chief, saying, “We are lucky and blessed to have a police chief like him.”  

When asked about her position on Pottstown’s police department, Councilor Lindsay said, “Our police chief is so supportive with our community.” She went on to say, “I can’t tell you how this man is going into our communities trying to get that bridge, that gap to unite his officers with the community.”

Councilor Lindsay gave several examples of the police force integrating into the community of Pottstown. One example she gives is when the police department showed up to an event held by local Muslim leaders. 

The police department wants to have a connection with the younger generations and future leaders of Pottstown, Councilor Lindsay said, adding that they want to inform the children how to deal with a police officer properly and build a relationship of trust and respect.

Although Mayor Henrick and Councilor Lindsay have much pride in their village of Pottstown, they also have concerns, mostly COVID-19 oriented. Mayor Henrick believes “This could have all been shortened if there wasn’t so much of a political issue with wearing masks and social distancing.” She said she attempts to keep politics out of her job.  

Councilor Lindsay expressed the importance of history in a situation like this. “We need to pay more attention to history … we teach history for this reason, so we can go back and look at what happened back then.” 

Mayor Henrick said that she is a good listener and mediator and that she wears many hats to ensure the Borough of Pottstown’s happiness. She wants to make Pottstown a place where someone can start their family.