Apr 5, 2007

Central Neighborhood Association notes

(Some notes from longtime Central Neighborhood Association [CNA] member Jean Tinnea, posted with her permission)

Just a couple of historical notes: Louise Thompson and family have always worked with the police to stop the drug dealing, loitering and shootings. Louise started the 23rd & Union Crime Prevention Task Force that morphed into the Union Street Business Group (USBG). Louise has gotten death threats and had her windows shot out for cooperating with the police. Shutting Thompson's down is not a reasonable response nor is it fair. Working with Louise and family is a better choice.

The USBG hasn't been active for a couple of years, but this kind of negative activity may spur some participation. Please support our local businesses by shopping, movie-watching and eating and let the business owners/operators know that you want their support to stop the dealing, shooting and loitering. Most of these owners are aware of the response to Louise's pro-police, pro-safety position and may be in fear. Not everyone has Louise's courage. It should help if we stand together and talk to each other.

Officer Tim Greeley stopped by my office yesterday and is well aware of the new level of drug dealing and shooting along Union. Time confirmed that there is also a group of kid burglars at work. If a couple of cute kids come by selling candy and ask to use the bathroom or want to come in and get a drink of water, be harsh and point them at the nearest public bathroom. They are casing your house for robbery. Sad but true.

Tim is willing to work with us and keep the patrol officers in the loop. In my experience, there is often a disconnect between us and the patrol officers. It makes me crazy. I walk to the PO every day and stop to talk to any police officers I see and ask them if they're aware of the latest concerns. Sometimes they give me that 'huh?' and I fill them in. I also want the officers to get out of their cars and walk among us.

As to what to call yourselves, a block watch is one plus you are welcome to join the Central Neighborhood Association (CNA) that has been active here for at least 20 years. It started with crime and safety concerns and grew to include the Union St Improvement Project, seven Garden Tours and a few street parties. The CNA has a good reputation with the City, the police, and other neighborhood associations. (We have street cred and carry some weight!)

Once we completed the Union St Improvement Project (19th - 24th, $500,000 in grant and City $$ and ten years' of work) we were worn out and haven't been very active since. We just held a CPR class and the next meeting is Disaster Prep 6:30 April 17th at the Lutheran Church 22nd & Union. There will be time for general discussion after the disaster preparedness presentation.

We need our website set up anew and some people to lead (President, anyone?) and/or organize meetings and events.

I am pleased that the owner and some customers from Earl's Cuts and Styles at 23rd & Union came to the CPR class and plan to attend the disaster prep meeting. My personal goal has always been to have a diverse, real representation of the 'hood at CNA functions.

Another good way to combat street crime is to be in the streets. The spring free Plant Exchange will be held Sat. April 21st 10am-2pm at the Copymaster parking lot at 20th & Union. You don't need to bring plants to attend. Come meet your neighbors, air your concerns, pick up some free plants and gardening tips. Sonja Richter, our retiring SPD safety liason, is one of the organizers of the Plant Exchange.

In October Nic Pottier set up a CNA google group for just this type of conversation. Please join, see below. Jean Tinnea

CNA Google Group:

http://groups.google.com/group/centralna

You'll need a (free) Google account, and can then sign up for the CNA group.

1 comment:

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