I am often awakened by texts in the middle of the night, alerting me to shootings in one of the neighborhoods I represent. This past summer was no different. Four individuals were recently shot at a house party in Oak Park; thankfully all survived. I get weekly calls and social media contact about cars being broken into, bikes being stolen and illegal activity in the neighborhood. All these incidents make our community members feel fearful and unsafe in their homes and neighborhood.
Sacramento Police statistics generally show a decrease in overall crime in the Sacramento area. Nevertheless, what we see, hear and feel about our community is important. Residents need to feel safe in their homes and neighborhood regardless of where they live, and we always need to focus on having a strong neighborhood response. While we are annually increasing the number of police in our efforts to rebuild the force to pre-recession levels, the reality is we will never have enough police to monitor every street in every neighborhood. Police interventions also need to be viewed as a short-term solution to long-term challenges.
I believe that, in addition to increasing the numbers of police patrolling our neighborhoods, there are two long-term strategies the City should be undertaking. First, we need to continue investing in our young people, providing them the supports and opportunities they need to be successful. Keeping them out of the back of patrol cars is as important as adding more cars. Second, and critically important at this moment in time, it is my belief that only when people take responsibility for their own communities will we collectively create an environment that both feels safe and is safe. No neighborhood is better equipped to achieve this goal than Curtis Park.
There are many tools that we as members of the community have and can implement, including neighborhood watches, video surveillance, neighborhood phone trees and more proactive use of NextDoor, which will benefit us all. To better support Curtis Park and create a safer neighborhood, I have asked Eric Johnson, president of SCNA, to cohost a neighborhood safety meeting. This will take place from 7–8:30 p.m. on October 2nd in Curtis Hall at Sierra 2. Please attend if you can. We will post a summary of the meeting on both my website and SCNA’s www.sierra2.org.
If you have other thoughts, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
RSVP to the Facebook event invite: https://www.facebook.com/events/115058355878817/