LSNA Congress Demands Police Protection, Celebrates Victories

It was standing room only for LSNA’s 46th annual Congress. Over 300 people packed the auditorium May 20th at McAuliffe Elementary to demand equal police protection and supportive housing while celebrating victories. 

“In Police District 25 we have twice as many residents as other police districts in the city and four times the violent crime,” said Erika Soto, LSNA leader and McAuliffe parent. “How is it that we don’t have more police officers?” LSNA revealed statistics that Lakeview District 23 has 393 residents per officer – compared to 669 in District 25.

District 25 Commander Salvador Avila promised to fund youth programming such as basketball, soccer and poetry and to work with LSNA youth to plan the activities. A “Know Your Rights” workshop at Kelvyn Park will kick off efforts to improve police-youth relations. Letters Avila received from Kelvyn Park Social Justice Academy students “provided a perspective I seldom get to hear and certainly made me think about how we might work together,” Avila said.Residents presented Ald. Ariel Reboyras (30) with 1001 signatures asking for a stoplight at Pulaski and Cortland, where many accidents have occurred. Reboyras said he would work with LSNA to help make it happen and to increase resources to the 25th District.

A skit illustrated how the City and Alderman Rey Colon (35) turned down a proposal to create much-needed supportive housing in the Sachs Building (Milwaukee and Diversey). The audience wrote personal postcards to Mayor Daley asking him to re-consider Supportive Housing at the Sachs Building.

The Congress also celebrated the start of the Ames Middle School project to build a model middle school that includes a health center in the school, more academic and enrichment programming and social supports for families.

Daniel LaSpata representing Alderman Rey Colón listens as Delia Ramirez (played by Angelica Dominguez) talks to him about supportive housing as Yesendy Castañeda looks on.