As the election season begins to get into full swing in anticipation of the upcoming mid-term in November, the polarized nature of today’s political and social environment makes this an important time to remind community association directors and unit owners of the importance of the need for civility and respect in their interactions with their neighbors. These times, when yard signs supporting candidates and social causes/organizations have led to skirmishes and hostilities in connection with past elections, make this an ideal moment to remind stakeholders in communities of the efforts that can be deployed to promote civility among neighbors.
While we are often reminded about the importance of preserving our individuality, it is also vital to remain tolerant of others’ individuality. This concept is even more relevant within community association living – in which many individuals with different points of view, ideals and opinions are required to coexist with each other in a relatively small area, and also to share in the use and upkeep of common facilities. Communities in which owners display high levels of volatility and intolerance may be considered undesirable places to live, where discord may stand in the way of progress.
At the other end of the spectrum, some communities choose to avoid conflicts in situations that could result in the stagnation of progress or in the deterioration of the fabric of the community, possibly even resulting in declining property values.
In light of the potential for adverse results that may arise due to community conflicts, unit owners as well as directors and managers should focus on efforts to advance the objectives of their community while remaining tolerant of differing opinions, approaches and points of view.