The City of Fayetteville held a Race in America roundtable discussion between public servants who have managed Fayetteville-Cumberland Human Relations efforts since the Commission's creation in 1965.
Town Hall Panelists included Former State Representative Elmer Floyd, Ron McElrath, Dr. Anthony Wade and the current Commission Vice-Chairwoman Milette Harris as the moderator.
Panelists spoke about where Fayetteville came from and where the future is heading.
"When it comes down to planning for the future, you have to understand where you come from," said Wade. "When you speak to these issues going forward, you speak to them based on your reflections of the past."
The panel said they could use the past as a launching pad to push Fayetteville to a better future. Many panelists believe the roadmap to a more progressive future is through the youth.
The human relation commission has discussed having a youth commission so the young leaders of the community can talk about the issues in their city and schools.
"It's never too late, and it's never too early to get involved," said Harris.'
The vice-chairwoman said the key to impact change is to educate, communicate and listen to everyone in the community, no matter the perspective.
McElrath says to work toward a more inclusive community; they need to look at where the decision-makers are and make sure that everyone is sitting at the table. He said constant dialogue is essential to ensure everyone is on the same page and understands everyone's perspective.
"We must never assume that what progress we've gained, we can't lose," McElrath said.