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Salem

City unveils plaque to honor tolerance, diversity

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The city recently unveiled a plaque downtown that celebrates Salem’s embrace of tolerance and diversity. Installed at the corner of Front and Washington streets, the plaque features an inscribed quote by Holocaust survivor and Nobel Peace Prize recipient Elie Wiesel that reads: “The opposite of love is not hate, it’s indifference.” The installation of the plaque was an initiative of the city’s No Place for Hate Committee, whose chairman, Scott Weisberg, served as master of ceremonies. Mayor Kimberley L. Driscoll, along with US Representative John F. Tierney and state Representative John Keenan, both Salem Democrats, were among the other speakers at the Jan. 31 ribbon cutting. Others included Patricia Maguire Meservey, president of Salem State University; School Superintendent Stephen Russell; Rinus Oosthoek, executive director of the Salem Chamber of Commerce; and Police Lieutenant Conrad Prosniewski. Members of the City Council and School Committee were also on hand. “This new plaque and the No Place for Hate Committee’s work embody what Salem is all about,” Driscoll said in a prepared statement, adding that the city is home to “people with many different backgrounds, nationalities, religions and faiths, living and working together to make us a stronger community. Such diversity drives us to understand and appreciate one another’s differences, and is exactly what makes Salem such a welcoming and desirable place to live.” No Place for Hate communities, designated by the Anti-Defamation League carry out specific steps to promote tolerance.

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