Mon October 8, 2012
Seelbach discusses recent public safety listening sessions
Cincinnati Council Member Chris Seelbach and his staff are following up on the information they gathered last month during a series of public safety listening sessions.
He estimated he met with about 75 residents during open office hours held around the city. Seelbach also talked with about 60 police officers and 60 firefighters.
He said one common theme during the meetings with residents concerned loitering and curfew violations among young people.
“So we’re setting up meetings specifically with the people that came out and community police officers to say, what’s being done about enforcing our curfew and if we’re not doing it, why not and how can we start enforcing it,” Seelbach said. “Then also how can we stop people from loitering, stop 100 people from gathering in a White Castle parking lot and making people feel unsafe as they get out of their cars and walk to a local business.”
After the open sessions, Seelbach and his staff are working on several issues residents brought to them. Those include a dangerous curve on Glenway Avenue between East and Lower Price Hill and problems with overgrown trees and trash on Gray Road in College Hill.
Seelbach said the officers he spoke with are worried about the number of retirements in the police department.
“They’re very concerned about the lack of a new police class in the last 5 years and that’s something they could very specifically show me was having an effect on safety in our city,” Seelbach said.
City firefighters expressed similar concerns about retirements.
“They’re feeling the effect, instead of having 10 calls a day, they’re seeing 20 calls because another company may be browned out,” Seelbach said. “That’s not something they like.”
He also said the sessions will likely continue in the future with residents and other city employees.