Critics of a new Chicago anti-violence initiative claim it is a ploy to aid Mayor Lightfoot’s reelection campaign.
Given the upcoming mayoral election, some police sources question the timing of the CPD’s new crime prevention community engagement initiative.
The mayor’s reelection campaign recently emailed CPS teachers to encourage their students to volunteer for her reelection campaign.
While the mayor claims she was unaware of the effort, there are some reservations about the new police program.
The new Crime Prevention Community Engagement Initiative began on Thursday, but command staff and patrol officers met with the department’s 10th district on Friday before canvassing portions of North Lawndale and other West Side neighborhoods.
The goal of this task is to meet with people in the community one on one, share crime prevention strategies, and take requests for city services.
The mayor claims she had no involvement in the incident and credits Supt. David Brown and his leadership team with developing the program.
“I think it’s great that the white shirts are out there leading by example and talking to community members about what resources are available to them, especially when it comes to crime,” Lightfoot said.
CPD has only stated that the program is important for improving communication with residents and making neighborhoods safer, but the president of the Fraternal Order of Police, John Catanzara, believes they are being abused.
“There’s talk around headquarters that she’s literally using command staff exempt rank members to do campaigning on her crime stats from 2022 that are literally so out of this world wonderful,” Catanzara explained.
The mayor, along with eight other candidates for her position, will make their case to voters at a mayoral forum at the Chicago Temple on Saturday afternoon.
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