Caitlin Cook (D)
Education: Capital High School, Youngstown State University
Occupation: Communications Director, West Virginia Center on Budget and Policy
Q: Do you support evidence-based programs to protect public health during the drug abuse crisis?
A: Yes, a collaborative evidence-based effort is crucial to moving forward as a community while helping those who need it. It’s important we listen to our first responders, providers like Manna Meal and Covenant House and citizens alike. If only one view point is acted on, problems will persist.
Q: Would you support expanding the bike pathway along Kanawha Boulevard?
A: Yes, but we need more information as to its use, the project’s costs and future path expansion along with other city recreation plans to make sure it’s something our citizens want, would use, and could tie to other projects to develop more recreational opportunities to enhance our quality of life.
Daily Mail Opinion:
Q: How should the city address the issue of criminal transient individuals?
A: Collaboratively, compassionately and strategically -- these are people. Charleston’s homelessness increase is rooted in an economic downtown and an opioid crisis. It will take federal, state and local officials getting treatment resources in the communities that need them most. We must work with partners to get resources outside of Charleston for people.
Q: Has the city of Charleston become a better or worse place to live in the past five years? How so?
A: Depends on the day. Our arts and culture scene, recreational opportunities and small businesses continue to improve, offering citizens and visitors great experiences at the same time our city’s population, and in turn revenue has declined and crime has increased. I wouldn’t want to call anywhere else home, though.