The Aug. 2 front-page article “In Baltimore, a healing process cut short” failed to report on the brilliant Baltimore that emerged from tragedy and uprising. The Baltimore Office of Promotion & the Arts, of which I am chief executive, in partnership and collaboration with many city leaders and organizations, began a celebration known as Light City to help the community heal through art, light and innovation.

Since then, Light City and all other events have brought the community together, driven tourism and generated millions of dollars in direct economic impact for area businesses and the more than 600,000 people who call Baltimore home.

As with many modern and urban U.S. cities, Baltimore has its issues, which have been thoroughly and inaccurately chronicled. The story that’s been told about Charm City is out of date and perpetuates negative perceptions and stereotypes. But the data show that’s just not the case.

Baltimore is a place people want to live, and key economic indicators prove it. Fiscal data points, such as increased wages, lower unemployment rates and high sales activities in the city, attest to Baltimore’s healthy economic environment.

It is time people outside Baltimore discover our true identity instead of basing assumptions on headlines that propagate misinformation. It’s time for people outside of Baltimore to open their eyes and engage with our reality: that our city is not just surviving; it is also thriving.

Donna Drew Sawyer, Baltimore

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