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Recently, I went to a town hall meeting on the status of Social Security. Appearing before a nearly full auditorium were speakers from labor unions, youth groups and retired and disabled workers.

Rep. Brian Higgins, along with an aide from Rep. Louise Slaughter's office, joined the panel of speakers, but Rep. Thomas Reynolds did not bother to attend. His absence was made particularly disappointing by the fact that the meeting took place in Amherst, the largest town in his congressional district. One of the many speakers at the meeting made reference to the following quote from Reynolds about Social Security that appeared in The News on Feb. 3: "I'm not afraid to discuss fixing a problem for my children and my grandchildren."

Well, the congressman missed a wonderful opportunity to discuss the issue and to hear from his constituents. At a time when the reputation of many area officeholders is in decline, the least that Reynolds could have done was to have sent an aide. The forum had been planned for weeks. People at the meeting were opposed to the president's plan for private accounts. At the very least, somebody from Reynolds' office should have been there. Instead, he snubbed us.

Margaret M. Roberts