Lightfoot promises more resources as Chicago tackles crime, safety issues – NBC Chicago

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot attended a town hall on Wednesday to discuss additional security plans her administration is putting in place, with more than 200 people attending the event at Chicago State University.

Lightfoot, facing a 2023 campaign that promises to focus heavily on crime and safety issues, said meetings like the CSU town hall aren’t a ‘stunt’ but rather part of an effort basis for tackling issues of security and violence.

“We only get out of the problem we have right now by being diligent, working on weapons,” she said.

Panel discussions took place at the event, with groups of community leaders, religious leaders and residents discussing the root causes of the violence and strategies that can be implemented to improve security.

“We need to do better to reclaim our history and invest (in these areas),” Lightfoot said.

“It really is an issue that affects everyone,” said Morgan Park resident Dallas Wright. “To have such a diverse collection together and to have the city’s endorsement backed by words, I’m so excited and hopeful.”

Police Superintendent David Brown says investing in communities is an essential part of the plan to help increase safety.

“The police are not a solution to problems with children. Our community and our government can help facilitate this plan,” he said.

Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady says investing in mental health care services is critical and the need has grown even worse during the COVID pandemic.

“That need has only gotten worse with COVID,” she said. “Since last year, we have seen our budget for mental health triple and seven times that of 2019.”

All officials involved in today’s meetings said there is still work to be done, and events like the roundtable aim to help direct funding and resources to where they are most needed.

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