The Daily Planet received this letter addressed to Councilmember Linda Maio:
I’m writing to you to express my outrage regarding the dismissal of Karen Craig from the Commission On Disability. Karen is and has been one of best advocates for people with disabilities in the City of Berkeley for a long time now.
Her numerous accomplishments are almost of legendary status.
She has shown time and time again that she is willing to go that extra distance to accomplish our goals related to making this City as accessible and disability aware as any city in the world.
She is a tireless worker who does way more than her share of the load required of Commission members. It would be impossible to replace someone of her status and devotion. I would strongly urge you to reconsider your action.
It’s painfully obvious that this decision didn’t come directly from you, but originated from Councilmember Dona Spring. Ms. Spring does not represent, or ever will represent all the people with disabilities in the City of Berkeley.
It’s extremely distressing to see that other councilmembers constantly look to Ms. Spring as the voice of the disabled citizens of Berkeley.
Frankly, I rarely agree with her political views when it comes to disability issues, and I know I’m not alone in that regard. The City Council should look to its appointed Commission on Disability.
That’s where and why Ms. Spring sees Karen as a threat as she (Ms. Craig) is seen as a Disability leader. I honestly thought you were above this type of political maneuvering but obviously I’m either wrong or you really were unaware of the motivating factors behind Ms. Spring’s request to have Karen removed from the Commission.
It is well known that Councilmember Spring and Karen Craig don’t see eye to eye on many issues but this is no reason to have her dismissed in this unjust manner.
By Ms. Spring and yourself unfairly using the “Easy Does It issue” as the reason negates all of Ms. Craig’s other accomplishments. I also believe that Karen was making good headway with Easy Does It in recent months. I believe you have been sorely misled by Scott Luebking who does not represent anyone but himself.
I would be more than happy to discuss this issue with you further. I once again would like to strongly urge you to reconsider your decision and have Ms. Craig reinstated.
Philip Martin Chavez