Charleston mayor speaks on public safety in nation’s capital

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Charleston Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin made a trip to Washington, DC this week for talks with other mayors and white house officials on everything from substance use disorder and mental health to homelessness.

Mayor Goodwin delivered remarks during a public safety panel at the National League of Cities’ Congressional City Conference in DC Sunday. She shared both the good and the bad about what’s been happening in her city from a public safety standpoint and spoke to the success of the City’s CARE Team.

“It was a tremendous honor to be invited by the National League of Cities to share insight – during the public safety panel alongside Mayors Giles, Lumumba, and Scott – on the establishment of the CARE Team to address substance use disorder, mental health, and homelessness; and the work Charleston is doing to address public safety, specifically the partnerships we have with federal agencies,” said Mayor Amy Shuler Goodwin.

On Monday, she met other mayors across the U.S. where they shared their experiences and how they handle different circumstances of public safety in their city. She made sure to boast about the massive meth bust in the state that just happened last week.

“I’ve been listening and learning from them on what they’ve been doing in their communities,” said Goodwin.

That evening, mayor Goodwin met with officials of President Biden’s administration where she thanked them for the funding the state received from the infrastructure legislation. The ARPA funding has been a huge boost to the state the mayor claimed.

“This is an administration that has invested in West Virginia,” the mayor said. “The ARPA funding has been next level for the mountain state.”

On Tuesday, the mayor said she plans to meet again with members of the Biden administration along with teams of U.S. Senators Shelley Moore Capito and Joe Manchin for more discussions at the White House. They’ll breakdown pieces of legislation related to infrastructure. Goodwin said the infrastructure needs are heavy in the state and more investments are needed.

“This isn’t just about investing in roads and bridges and sidewalks,” she said. “We’re talking about investing in our kids, and our seniors and neighborhoods.”

Goodwin said a lot of issues happening in Charleston are similar with other smaller cities in the country. The city’s CARE team deals with a lot of calls related to substance abuse disorder, something the mayor said is a problem nationwide.

“It’s okay to say you need help,” she said. “That’s the conversation we’re having.”