Council Statement on Arson Attack on City Hall

As a Council, we want the best for every resident of our city. Lancaster boasts a number of accomplishments and attractive features but, a safe place to live and work for every Lancastrian must be at the top of our priorities as a community.

Many of our City employees - employees who keep the water coming out of our faucets, protect our environment, maintain our public records, and help make our city beautiful - work at City Hall. Early yesterday morning, their sense of a safe place to work was disrupted when an arsonist set fire to the doors of City Hall and a city vehicle was vandalized and burned.

This was an attack on the public order, the institutions of our City, the people who keep it running, and the place where they work. Despite this incident, those people are back at work. They are in their offices, out on the streets, and everywhere else, doing their best. As Council members, we have gotten to meet many of these dedicated employees and seen the expertise and passion they bring to their work every day.

A reality of this kind of work is that when everything is running smoothly, people rarely notice, and these employees are rarely recognized for providing the amenities that we take for granted.

We are sad and we are angry about the reckless actions taken yesterday morning. We await the results of the investigation. We will have more to say when those results come, but more than any of that we are grateful for the City employees who showed up and continue to show up everyday.

Our city must be more equitable. It must be safer. It must provide opportunity for all, and it must protect human dignity. It will be a journey to reach that place from where we are, but we cannot get there without our City staff. The public must know that none of our ambitions can be achieved without the employees of the City of Lancaster.

At this trying time, our message to our colleagues is a simple one: we see you, we thank you, and we have your back!