Faith with National Association for the Advancement of Returning Citizens (NAARC)
KEEPING OUR COMMUNITY SAFE
It is clear that we are at a crisis point with violent crime overwhelming our city. Daily headlines, notifications on our phones, and conversations in the community about incidents of crime are making neighbors feel afraid and unsafe. No one should be afraid to leave their home or go about their daily lives. Understandably, neighbors want police action to stop this trend and hold the individuals committed crime accountable. At the same time, neighbors and advocates who have fought hard for justice reforms are concerned that their progress may be at risk; people are losing empathy.
I believe in a balanced approach that includes prevention and intervention, as well as accountability, consequences, and responsiveness to stop the terror that is playing out in our communities. We need a public health approach that also includes coordination and communication between law enforcement, community-based organizations and our court system. Many of these crimes are being committed by young people who have no sense of any consequences, but are also acting out of pain, trauma and hopelessness. We must find a balanced approach that does not allow violent and illegal behavior to go unpunished and undeterred, but also addresses the root causes of children committing very adult crimes. We must get better at both - at the same time.
We have resources in our communities and in our city that can intervene and surround our most troubled neighbors with mental health and other direct support services, while preventing them from continuing to harm our neighborhoods and terrorize our neighbors. But we must act now.
As your councilmember, I will fight to ensure our city agencies work together, rather than in silos, so that individual incidents are addressed swiftly, with coordination and an eye towards the bigger picture. Young people who commit crimes should not be thrown away, left to remain in cycles of crime, incarceration, and recidivism. They should have opportunities to experience transformation, and be able to use their experiences to make positive contributions to our society. We have seen countless examples of at-risk youth and returning citizens, when given the right interventions, opportunities, and supports, do just that.
Our leaders must take the necessary steps to stop the harm AND heal our communities. Let’s not lose sight of the goal – healthy, whole, and safe communities for ALL of us.
Learn more about my position on Violence Prevention and Public Safety here.
Faith Gibson Hubbard