Community meeting

Louisville mayor and police chief absent from community meeting on gun violence

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Louisville Metro Police Chief Erika Shields were conspicuously absent from a community meeting Monday night to address rising gun violence. The citizens of Louisville organized and united together held their annual action meeting. This year it was called “Victory Over Violence: CLOUT’s Strategies to Bring Shalom to Our City.” Each year, the group brings together members of the community to find out what the biggest issues affecting the city are. Member Larry Grossman said there were 22 search meetings at Monday’s meeting. He said crime kept coming back. “Violence and gun violence, in particular, is out of control in our city. It continues to escalate. Our numbers were up last year. Our numbers are now up 14-15% from a year ago. a year, “said Grossman. According to organizers, 1,200 community members were in attendance Monday night, in person and virtually. Really disappointing because things have gotten to a point where we really have to work together and we can no longer The longer we wait, the worse it gets,” said CLOUT co-chair Angela Johnson. “Public safety is the government’s first responsibility. I’m very disappointed that the mayor, or the deputy mayor, or the chief, or the deputy chief didn’t come, or the healthy and safe neighborhoods office,” James said. The group hoped that the mayor and chief would be there to pledge support for the group’s proposal to create a coalition of all individuals and groups currently working to address gun violence. The coalition will be led by the Office of Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods and the UofL Department of Criminal Justice. how various entities might be able to work together to achieve more effective results and assess what may be missing in the city’s collective response. “There are a lot of people and a lot of institutions doing great work in this city to end gun violence, but they’re not talking to each other,” Grossman said. According to Grossman, the coalition will meet within 60 next few days and will take inventory of all the resources they provide and then conduct a GAP assessment to see what needs are not b eing met. CLOUT also calls on the LMPD to move forward with plans to launch the new “Truth & Transformation” process with greater urgency. The process aims to address the critical lack of trust between the community and the police and will bring about greater racial equity. The process will be guided by the National Network for Safe Communities, which has spearheaded similar efforts in other cities. The initiative was expected to launch before the end of last year. Chief Shields released this statement in response to WLKY’s request for comment following his absence from the meeting: “I have complete faith in Director Meeks, the city’s chief equity officer, who is spearheading the implementation of the Truth and Transformation (formerly Reconciliation) project. He has brought a strong and consistent approach to the initiative, and under his leadership I believe that LMPD, with the help of many collaborative partners across the community, will be able to capture all that the program has to offer. “A spokesperson for Mayor Fischer’s office said he was unable to attend due to a previous engagement, but said he appreciated CLOUT’s support of violence prevention efforts. Organizers told the crowd that a representative from the OSHN was willing to attend but backed down on Friday saying they were no longer allowed to attend. They encouraged attendees to call the offices of Fischer and Shields to express their disappointment at their absence from the meeting.

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Louisville Metro Police Chief Erika Shields were conspicuously absent from a community meeting Monday night to address rising gun violence.

The citizens of Louisville organized and united together held their annual assembly of action. This year, it was titled “Victory over Violence: CLOUT’s Strategies to Bring Shalom to Our City”.

Each year, the group brings together members of the community to find out what are the biggest issues affecting the city. Member Larry Grossman said 22 search meetings were held before Monday’s meeting. He said the crime kept coming back.

“Violence and gun violence, in particular, is out of control in our city. It continues to rise. Our numbers have increased over the past year. Our numbers are now up 14-15% from a year ago. “, Grossman said.

According to organizers, 1,200 community members attended Monday night in person and virtually.

Fischer and Shields were both invited, but neither showed up.

“It’s really disappointing because things have gotten to a point where we really have to work together and we can’t do that anymore. The longer we wait, the worse it gets,” said CLOUT co-chair Angela Johnson.

Despite those notable absences, there were shows of support from at least five mayoral candidates, the University of Louisville and other elected officials like Metro Council President David James.

“Public safety is the government’s number one responsibility. I’m very disappointed that the mayor, or the deputy mayor, or the chief, or the deputy chief didn’t come, or the healthy and safe neighborhoods office,” said James.

The group hoped the mayor and chief would be there to pledge their support for the group’s proposal to create a coalition of all people and groups currently working to address gun violence.

The coalition will be led by the Office of Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods and the UofL Department of Criminal Justice. It will explore how various entities might be able to work together for more effective results and assess what may be missing from the city’s collective response.

“There are a lot of people and a lot of institutions doing great work in this city to end gun violence, but they’re not talking to each other,” Grossman said.

According to Grossman, the coalition will meet within the next 60 days and take inventory of all the resources it provides, then conduct a GAP assessment to see what needs are not being met.

CLOUT also calls on the LMPD to move forward with plans to launch the new “Truth & Transformation” process with more urgency. The process aims to address the critical lack of trust between the community and the police and will bring about greater racial equity.

The process will be guided by the National Network for Safe Communities, which has led similar efforts in other cities.

The initiative was to be launched before the end of last year.

Chief Shields released this statement in response to WLKY’s request for comment following his absence from the meeting:

“I have complete confidence in Director Meeks, the city’s Director of Equity, who is leading the implementation of the Truth and Transformation (formerly Reconciliation) project. He has brought a strong and consistent approach to the initiative, and under his leadership, I believe that LMPD, with the help of many collaborative partners across the community, will be able to capture all that the program has to offer.”

A spokesperson for Mayor Fischer’s office said he was unable to attend due to a previous engagement, but said he appreciated CLOUT’s support of violence prevention efforts. of the OSHN.

Organizers told the crowd that an OSHN representative was set to attend, but backed down on Friday saying they were no longer allowed to attend. They encouraged attendees to call the offices of Fischer and Shields to express their disappointment at their absence from the meeting.