Columbia should demonstrate and promote an equality amongst all of its citizens including persons with disabilities.
The Boone County Public Administrator serves minor and adult persons with disabilities. Public Administrator candidate Cathy Richards is quoted on the Columbia League of Women Voters' Web site as saying, "in essence, the public administrator is a surrogate parent to many of the individuals under his/her care. And just like a parent the Public Administrator is required to maintain their welfare, dictate rules and limitations and make certain their necessities and needs are taken care of."
It is never appropriate for any government official to analogize that their position is parental in any fashion.
An adult person with a disability is first and foremost a person. If they require a conservatorship or guardianship, they currently have the inability to manage their proprieties and have additional concerns and strife that the average person is fortunate enough not to have. They do not deserve being patronized. Public administrating should always be done from a position of respect from one adult to another adult.
Nor should a public administrator "dictate rules" to its clients. It is unprofessional and insulting. A public administrator regulates rules. It should only dictate professional respect toward the clients that it serves. This office is a direct reflection of how the government of Columbia treats its citizens, particularly, those who are disabled.
A public administrator is fiduciary, carrying duties to regularly disclose material information, to act in the utmost good faith, to act scrupulously and honestly and to avoid acts of self-dealing.