I recently had the opportunity to attend a Q&A session with the LA Mayor, hosted by local Neighborhood Councils. This was a great time to meet several local leaders, including City Council members, other non-profit leaders and political activists in the Los Angeles area.
The mayor’s time was spent entirely on audience questions, and his answers were a perfect combination of his personal feelings and professional responsibilities. He spoke quite directly with Guardian Angels in attendance about the wonderful reduction in violent crime in LA over the last several years, and was also quite excited about improvements to public transportation coming soon to the city. This would mean a convenient connection with our Hollywod, Venice, and West Los Angeles activities.
Of course, nostalgia of Angels in the subways of New York could never be replaced, but it will be quite nice to have the opportunity to efficiently bring Guardian Angels around the major city centers and neighborhoods.
A special treat that I had not expected was a brief but encouraging one on one discussion with Deputy Mayor Eileen Decker. Her office is particularly responsible for Homeland Security & Public Safety. As soon as she was introduced and we made eye contact, she made her way over to me, and we discussed the many opportunities available in Los Angeles for citizens to be directly involved with the safety of their neighborhoods.
- Volunteer Police
- CERT Program
- Neighborhood Watch
- Soup Kitchens, etc
I hope to follow up with this post soon, once I’ve had the chance to follow up with her and open up further dialog about how the Guardian Angels can play a helpful role in our enormous city. We’re such a big organization that it can be difficult for a city’s office to know quite what to do with us. Without clear communication and organization, we could easily be just another fringe special interest group with special requests; but handled properly, we can help organize caring and proactive volunteers from several fields of influence.