CHICAGO —The Memorial Day weekend is here and with it, comes safety concerns across the city of Chicago. In the wake of recent violence, Mayor Lori Lightfoot joined other city leaders Friday to outline the city’s summer safety plan.
City leaders said the safety plan for this weekend and the weeks ahead is a layered approach incorporating CPD and other city departments. Overall, the city’s top cop says CPD is increasing coverage and resources all across the city.
The city’s 22 beaches are scheduled to open back up this weekend.
“In those areas we’ll have more bike patrols and foot patrols to enhance safety and security,” Brown said.
“The is plan is in five parts plus one,” Brown said. “Public safety, enforcement, growing trust, strengthening investigations, promoting officer wellness. And making transformational change through real reform.”
Brown says increased CPD resources in place for the holiday weekend and beyond also include more officer visibility on the CTA.
“We’ve scaled up resources,” he said. “We have many more officers on the CTA, both on platforms fixed post and riding the trains.”
In spite of the city’s numerous public safety challenges, Brown said there are some successes to report. He says as we head into summer, homicides are down 11% and shootings are down 16%.
While those numbers are a step in the right direction, 2nd Ward Alderman Brian Hopkins said he knows of several residents in his ward who have hired private armed security guards to protect them.
“Our job is to make it so that this is unnecessary,” he said. “We need to hire and train more police officers for all neighborhoods of Chicago.”
On the South Side at Rainbow Push, the newly organized Hope Coalition hosted an anti-violence seminar Friday afternoon to brainstorm tactics to keep Chicagoans safe.
Earlier this month, 16-year-old Seandell Holliday was shot and killed near the Bean at Millennium Park. And last Thursday night, several people were shot, including two men who were killed near the intersection of State Street and Chicago Avenue.
One way Lightfoot hopes to curb violence is through recently voted changes to the city curfew.
This week, a curfew that has been part of city law since 1992 was altered with the support of the majority of City Council, a change stemmed from a Lightfoot executive order.
The changes roll back the curfew from 11 p.m. to 10 p.m. for anyone 17 and under, which will be enforced seven days a week.
“Parents, guardians, trusted adults make sure you know what the curfew is its 10 p.m. seven days a week for kids up to the age of 17,” she said.