LANSING, Mich. — Lansing Mayor Andy Schor began Lansing's first virtual state of the city address Wednesday night by reflecting on a year turned upside by COVID-19.
“It has been a challenging time here in Lansing and across the world,” he said. “I know we are all anxiously awaiting the time when we can once again gather in person. As more vaccinations are administered every day throughout our community, that time is getting closer.”
Widespread access to the vaccine and mass distribution of the shot are priorities, Schor said, and he urged the federal government to provide additional money to cities so they can avoid cuts to public services.
In the address, Schor also expressed his commitment to racial justice and equity for Lansing residents.
“Lansing is a proudly diverse city,” he said. “We remain focused on ensuring everyone is able to access city resources and that all people are treated with the same level of respect and dignity regardless of the color of their skin or how they identify.”
Last year, the mayor faced sharp criticism from minority communities for what they felt was insufficient action on police reform and other issues. There were protests at his home and calls for him to resign.
Schor also outlined the city’s economic rebound plan, announcing the Lansing Cares Program, which will distribute $1.5 million throughout the city. The money will assist small businesses and local organizations in danger of going under due to COVID-19. A portion of the money will also be used for homelessness prevention efforts.
“Certainly no one predicted a pandemic, or the economic challenges we would face as a result, but I know we are all ready to move forward and focus on what is next for this wonderful community,” Schor said.