Together Baton Rouge has been an important voice in Baton Rouge’s civic life, assembling members of local churches and other interested residents to consider longstanding challenges with education, poverty, crime and economic development.

We’re happy about the news that this model of civic engagement will have a statewide counterpart in a new group, Together Louisiana.

The Rev. Lee T. Wesley, a founding member of Together Baton Rouge, said the idea of forming a statewide group developed several months ago after leaders in Baton Rouge met with their counterparts in Monroe.

Communities across Louisiana face many common problems, and addressing them often requires thinking beyond the city limits of any single community.

We haven’t always agreed with the positions taken by groups such as Together Baton Rouge, and we’ll probably have our differences with Together Louisiana, too. But when more people become engaged in important matters of public policy, there’s a greater chance for constructive consensus on challenges facing the state.

We welcome Together Louisiana to the mix.