Montani Semper Liberi

“Montani Semper Liberi” — Mountaineers Are Always Free — is more than just West Virginia’s state motto; it’s a call to reinforce the pillars of freedom that underpin a thriving society. This broad spectrum of policies aims to reinvigorate the culture of freedom across the state, touching on critical areas from free speech and civil society to child welfare, civil asset forfeiture, and electoral reform.

Free Speech

We must maintain free speech on college and university campuses. Allowing people to express their thoughts and ideas is essential for creating a culture of intellectual curiosity, critical thinking, and open debate. This is true even if the ideas are controversial or unpopular. An atmosphere of open inquiry helps students, faculty, and staff engage in constructive dialogue and exchange diverse perspectives, which leads to a more robust academic community and a healthier society overall. It’s important to air and challenge different opinions, whether we’re discussing politics, religion, or any other topic. This is vital for promoting intellectual growth, expanding knowledge, and strengthening civic values.

Civil Society

Philanthropy, churches, and community engagement are the backbone of civil society in West Virginia. These institutions are crucial in supporting the community, providing essential services, and creating a sense of belonging among residents. By strengthening civil society organizations, we can improve the social safety net and reinforce the state’s culture of independence and self-reliance.

Foster Care/Child Welfare

West Virginia’s foster care and child welfare system is facing significant challenges. To solve these issues, we need to identify gaps in the current system and develop actionable strategies for better care and support of vulnerable children. Some focus areas should be increasing support for foster families, identifying means for greater efficiency within foster and adoptive processes, and ensuring that children in the welfare system have access to quality education, health care, and support. This is the first step, but creating a better future for these children is critical.

Civil Asset Forfeiture

In West Virginia, the government can take property without convicting or even charging its owner with a crime. This process, called “civil asset forfeiture,” must be eliminated to protect West Virginia’s citizens. By doing so, we want to show that the state is committed to protecting the rights of its residents and ensuring that law enforcement practices are transparent and fair.

Learn more about how these policy changes can positively impact your life in West Virginia. Explore our detailed resources to understand the real-life implications of these policies and how they can enhance your day-to-day living.

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The Cardinal Institute for West Virginia Policy works alongside Mountaineers to build a West Virginia Miracle founded on economic freedom, education freedom, worker freedom, and a culture of freedom enshrined in the state motto: Mountaineers are Always Free.

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