Since I’ve been in office, it isn’t uncommon for me to mention to my constituents that we are a team. That in order for me to successfully do my job, I need them to step up and call, email, attend our meetings, engage their neighbors, and reach out to me so that together we can make our district, our neighborhoods and our community a better place. When the good people shrink away and stop being involved it creates a vacuum that will be filled by bad actors. I believed in that before I got into office and I still believe in it now. Fortunately, I believe that the good people still far outnumber the bad in this community.
In the early morning hours of September 19th my wife’s car was stolen. We did our part – we went to our local police district and made the report and although it seemed hopeless, we kept our eyes open for vehicles on the street as we traveled the community. But the tip that ultimately resulted in the return of the vehicle came from residents who noticed something amiss about a vehicle that they had never seen parked in their neighborhood being driven by people who they had never seen in their neighborhood who were doing suspicious things that are uncharacteristic for their neighborhood. These Milwaukeeans saw something and they said something and my entire family is grateful. We are also so very grateful for the swift, diligent work done by the men and women serving in the Milwaukee Police Department in recovering the vehicle.
I encourage everyone in our city to do the same thing. If something abnormal is observed in your neighborhood, don’t leave it to someone else. If you see something, say something. Stay involved in your neighborhood. Start a block club. Get to know your neighbors. That sort of organizing is the only way that we can root out the problems on our streets.
One of my partners in this work has a note that ends every email. It says, “If we don’t claim our neighborhoods, then someone else will.” This is true. I believe that neighborhoods belong to the good people in our community – not those who work to tear them down. Let’s all do our part to claim our neighborhoods.
To report suspicious activity in your neighborhood, call the Milwaukee Police Department at 414-933- 4444.