Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Walnut Street

I live on Wood Street, between Oak and Walnut. For the most part, this is a working class neighborhood. Most of the people who live here struggle to make ends meet. We have seniors who worked all their lives and are trying to enjoy retirement; young parents raising families; and mid-life adults who are underpaid and overworked. This is a classic Waterbury neighborhood, where everyone knows one another, where there are children playing in the front yards while grown-ups watch them from the porch. 

My neighborhood has just suffered the third fatal shooting this year. The rising tide of danger in the neighborhood seems to be coming from the corner stores on Walnut Street, but it could just as easily happen at the one on Oak Street. These stores have been magnets for illicit activity for years, from drug dealing to dog fighting, but whenever neighborhood residents have complained, nothing seems to be done. Oh, except that one time when  I blogged about getting into an argument with an officer who insisted that all poor people are no good. 

There are dozens of young children who live here. The school bus stops are right next to the places where the shootings have occurred. Walsh School is only a few blocks from the shootings. How much worse does it have to get before the City of Waterbury helps us? Every politician in the city should be speaking out about this.

I was going to write a post about sidewalks. About how my neighborhood has been asking for new sidewalks for years to no avail, but as soon as someone in the affluent Country Club neighborhood asks for a sidewalk, they get one. I will probably still write about the sidewalk issue, but right now I'm reduced to begging the City of Waterbury to do something, anything, so I'm not afraid to leave my house. 

Set aside the politics. I don't care whose ego is injured. Three fatal shootings within a block of each other in one year is outrageous.

UPDATE: April 2015.
The City of Waterbury did a fantastic job of handling the violence problem. Kudos to the Police Department. They really know what they are doing. Kudos as well to Erika Cooper, who lives in the WOW neighborhood. In response to the violence, she organized the Uplift a Life Parents Committee, which has been giving neighborhood kids productive, educational, and fun things to do which help the community at large.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Anyone know what that explosion was a few minutes ago