I attended the excellent Neighborhood Engagement Office meeting on March 26, 2022. Here is the news you can use from the event.
GET YOUR FREE FIRE ALARM FOR THE DEAF OR HARD OF HEARING
*The NOLA Fire Department has flashing strobe alarms for the deaf or hard of hearing which they will install for free!
*Biggest reason people won't get one, according to Chief Roman Nelson: "People don't admit they're hard of hearing!" (So I say, admit it and "git" it!)
*You should also replace your smoke alarms every 10 years (which I didn’t know)
HELP NOPD RETAIN OFFICERS BY BOOSTING MORALE AND MAKING IT COOL TO BE A COP FOR KIDS WHO MIGHT THINK ABOUT THE PROFESSION
NOPD is suffering from severe attrition—down from 1500 to now around 1242—mostly from pension issues, civil unrest challenges, retirement. NOPD used to get 400-500 applications per month before, now get 260. NOPD is creating retention bonuses and promotions and creating career paths. But you can help too:
* Help recruit officers by making it cool to be a cop today
*Say "thank you" to the officers you see and let them know you appreciate the work," says NOPD Chief, Shaun Ferguson
*Ask civic leaders to step up. "The City Council used to bring in officers to give a job well done," Ferguson says. "They don't do that anymore."
*Show community support: parents and citizens calling in makes a difference
PROTECT YOUR PROPERTY PROPERLY
NOPD is making arrests of juveniles, but they are not being taken off the street by the juvenile courts. What can you do?
*Communicate to the Juvenile Court judges to make sure they do what they’re supposed to do
*Find out who is going through the programs and who is coming back onto the streets
*Ask: “What programs are being implemented? Are they using the holistic system? You can’t refer a kid alone; you have to look at the family. “
*Neighborhood watches are encouraged. A security patrol helps.
RED LIGHT VIOLATIONS
Everyone is rushed in NOLA! You must address the problem the moment it occurs. Putting up more cameras would help but citizens are apparently against that.
TRUANCY & JUVENILE CRIME
Contrary to rumor, juvenile crime is not being directed by adults, says Ferguson. “That’s from the movies.” It’s more likely he says, “they get into social media disputes and they take it live.”
After the pandemic, the NOPD is unable to create a place for intake to make sure a child is attached to school. Now, they bring the child back to the school. But they don’t necessarily know which school they belong to.
*Call the school board to ask for them to take responsibility for truancy
*Juveniles are not in the computer system. You must contact your state representative to ask for this to change
*Call NOPD if you see kids in stores or on the streets during school hours
CAR WINDOW BREAK-INS
*NOPD doesn’t collect DNA if it’s not a burglary
*NOPD looks at violent crimes first
--Lesley Jane Seymour