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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Bloomington city leaders are working to make the community farmers’ market a more welcoming and inclusive environment.

This comes after a vendor’s alleged ties to white supremacy sparked protests and threats.

Schooner Creek Farm, the vendor at the center of the farmer’s market controversy, is accused of having ties to white supremacy. The owner denies any ties to a hate group.

Bloomington Mayor John Hamilton announced efforts the city is working on to address the issues at the market. This includes inviting help from The Bridge Initiative from The Ohio State University.

The city said the project works through experienced leaders who can meet with local leaders to better understand underlying concerns that may not be readily apparent.

“We requested the expert assistance of DCP’s Bridge Initiative to create an arena in which all stakeholders can peacefully and productively share concerns and contribute to meaningful change,” said Hamilton.  “We are grateful for their guidance, and especially to the leadership of Mayor Johnson, and we look forward to sharing his findings.”

Project leaders are working to understand the issues and develop plans of action to address them, using tools for tracking progress toward goals.

The Bridge Initiative is expected to share a report to serve as a foundation for action by community and government leaders.