Violent crime is in the news again because there has been another homicide in a crime ridden building on the edge of my neighborhood. It is sad, extremely upsetting, and has unfortunately become a routine occurrence. We ended 2020 tying the highest homicide rate the city has ever seen, and that is simply not acceptable.
The city has budget constraints and we cannot afford a tax increase of any amount. To move forward with a safer Syracuse we will need new ideas. That includes increased community engagement and a professionally trained civilian auxiliary police force that can assist and compliment officers in reporting suspicious activities and addressing non-priority calls that now take police away from more urgent matters. We also need department leadership that can effectively allocate resources and direct officers to immediate needs.
The city has failed the residents of the Skyline apartments for years.
In failing to properly engage the building management, in failing to follow up to ensure building management’s promises were kept, and in failing to prosecute the building owner pursuant to the nuisance abatement ordinance, the city failed them. The city failed those tenants but it also continues to fail every neighborhood and every resident.
The old ideas haven’t worked and won’t work moving forward. Almost every city resident has a story about how they have been victimized and that is simply unacceptable.
The city needs a new vision and fundamental change to its system of policing and I promise to do exactly that.