Public Safety: Keeping Our Families Safe
We have become one of the most dangerous cities in the United States. There are 1,216 cities in Texas and we are now ranked the 4th most dangerous.
Our 911 response times are at 15-year highs, violent crime is off the charts, and Ivy does not seem to get it. For our community’s sake, let’s hope the Mayor starts to focus on the crime problem we have today.
As your Mayor, I will understand that it is my job to keep you and your families safe!
1. Police Department
Patrol Officers. We need to hire 250 police officers. They are already in the budget, but the City Manager has failed to keep up with recruitment, retention, and retirement.
Equipment. Requests for basic equipment become tugs of war with the City Manager. These power plays must end immediately.
Accountability. Police officers are held to a high standard. I support the great majority of peace officers who protect and serve honorably. And, we all agree that the bad apples must be identified and weeded out.
2. Community Policing Strategies
We must double-down on our community policing strategies. At a time where our City has become one of the most dangerous cities in the State, our police officers should continue to build relationships with local leaders, community organizations, and neighborhood families.
3. 911 Emergency Call Center
Answer rate must improve significantly. Our 911 Emergency Call Center does not answer 20% of all calls, that is three times the national average of 7%.
Response times are too high. We have the longest response-time rate in the last 16 years. This is unacceptable.
4. Smart Justice
Intervention Programs. Relationship building with at-risk individuals allows us to prevent many tragedies. We must invest all grants from the state for intervention programs into on-the-ground ambassadors and stop siphoning off these resources into pet projects.
Re-Entry Programs. There are 30,000 plus parolees in San Antonio and Bexar County. Let us reach out more effectively to inform parolees of relevant workforce and educational opportunities.
5. Community Partners
Partner effectively with churches, ministries, non-profits, and community organizations. We must work with them to identify their needs and partner them with our available resources.
The 2017 Bond would have been an excellent opportunity to include lights for parks, community buildings, and other projects that bring people together and reduce crime.
6. Job Opportunities
Good Jobs with Benefits. In addition to $50 per hour jobs, the City should also recruit employers with $15 per hour jobs. Lately, we have lost too many good paying jobs to Schertz, Seguin and New Braunfels.
City Contracts. Let us provide incentives for companies that support Second-Chance Hires.
Ban-The-Box. At the City, we do not ask for criminal history at the application stage, so that everyone has a chance of qualifying to the interview stage. This practice should be promoted in the private sector here in San Antonio.
7. Livable Wage
San Antonio must lead the fight nationally to ensure that we eliminate the concept of “working poor.” If you work hard and play by the rules, you should not have to live in poverty. Our fight for $15 per hour will be won!