Forum panel shares "Growing Up" study


Growing Up Panel   It probably will come as no surprise that most people like living here in Washington County.
   This was some of information gleaned from a recent study called "Growing Up," which was released at a joint forum between WEA and Vision Action Network.
  The forum brought together a panel of DHM Research's Adam DavisClean Water Services' Mark Jockers, Coalition of Communities of Color's Marcus Mundy, and ECONorthwest's John Tapogna.
   Despite the fact that most people like living here, the study revealed the county is experiencing some growing pains.
   Davis said those surveyed shared their angst or worry about being able to continue to afford to live here, mainly due to housing costs.
   Tapogna said Washington County is better off than 2/3 of other counties in America, and we are in the middle of the largest economic expansions in U.S. history, so it is worrisome that people are concerned about their financial health.
   The survey showed the area has a low crime rate, a higher rate of two-parent families, relatively low commute times, and is average when it comes to racial integration.
   Davis said 74 percent of those surveyed said housing is less affordable; 63 percent said the region is getting too crowded; and 53 percent said it's harder to get around.
   The panel felt there is still plenty going right in Washington County to keep propelling the region forward.
   Mundy encouraged people to get involved and engaged at the civic level.
   Some programs mentioned that help with this are Beaverton's BOLD, the county's Civic Leaders Project with Adelante Mujeres, Centro de ProsperidadThrives, and Paseos Verdes
   The Growing Up study/survey started with Clean Water Services desire to know its customers better.
   Jockers said the agency has data on its customers dating back 30 years, but it didn't have a complete picture because it lacked data on people of color in the community, which the "Growing Up" study conscientiously worked to include.
   Jockers is encouraging everyone to share the study widely with friends, colleagues, and family.
   To take a deeper dive into the study, visit the website:
   To see photos from Wednesday's event, visit the WEA Facebook page