I take a moment to write this as the United Way campaign for 1986-87 is being formally launched. This has been a period of unnecessary travail for the United Way organization, and it seems to me that the community really now needs to come together to make sure that United Way's goal is successfully achieved.
Your newspaper recognized the positive statements, the positive achievements of United Way in developing editorial support. Your paper also recognized the fine work of the Citizen's Independent Study Committee for United Way under the leadership of Robert Dockson, and the positive statements in that report about the importance of United Way continuing to receive substantial community support.
The agency that I have had the good fortune to lead professionally for the last seven years has received enormous support from United Way, both financial as well as the opportunity to participate in collaborative efforts with many other United Way agencies to make Los Angeles a healthier community. Whatever the errors of judgment were in the past are outdistanced significantly by the major achievements of United Way. If there were no United Way, we would, in fact, invent one.
This community needs to support what United Way has done and needs to continue doing. United Way needs to be able to attract sound professional staff to provide the necessary service for the effective work of this major communal agency. That means that salaries need to be paid, and those salaries are part of the overall campaign expense. We, in the community, can take a good deal of pride about the low cost of fund-raising that United Way has achieved through effective management and consolidation of functions. The cost of fund-raising by United Way is less than the majority of United Way communities and far more effective than the fund-raising costs of independent organizations.