STAMFORD, CT - URGENT - SAVE OUR PARK POLICE
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STAMFORD, CT - URGENT - SAVE OUR PARK POLICE
The City is running out the clock...As of June 30th, if our two Park Police Officers are not reappointed by the Police Commission, they will cease to exist. Not only do we need these Officers reappointed, we need their numbers increased. Our parks have in some cases been OVERTAKEN and many more of them have become UNSAFE and UNCOMFORTABLE due to:
· drug use/alcohol related deaths
· homeless living in the parks
· drag racing
· lifeguards leaving due to lack of backup
These are just some of the most serious issues that drive residents away from our Parks. Handling these situations and enforcement of many other Parks Rules & Regulations are what Park Police do to keep our parks an enjoyable destination.
Please sign this petition and send an email to Mayor Martin and the Police Commissioners, example attached, asking them to maintain a dedicated Park Police unit and their relationship to Parks Operations. Mayor Martin has accepted an invitation to attend the Board of Representatives, Parks & Recreation Committee meeting, June 20that the Government Center. Please email before this meeting and try to attend. It is open to the public, however, it is not a public hearing.
Why Save Park Police?
• Park Police were established prior to 1970, specifically designed to address issues the Stamford Police Department cannot prioritize
• When Park Police perform their other duties, their presence in the parks is a crime deterrent, because they are uniformed police officers… BUT: Park Police responsibilities go far beyondmerely keeping Parks safe from crime
• Examples of Park Police typical priorities
◦ People refusing to stop for the gate attendants for lack of a permit
◦ People using counterfeit permits (yes, this is a ‘thing’)
◦ People refusing to obey lifeguards and other safety officials such as Dockmasters, Skating Rink employees, etc.
◦ Enforcement of numerous Park Regulations
▪ Noise (loud music, etc.)
▪ Unleashed pets / people not cleaning up after pets / pets on beaches
▪ Fires in unauthorized / dangerous areas
▪ Harassment of or harming wildlife
▪ Unauthorized use of the boat launching ramps
▪ Vehicles on Cove Island, driving on grass and even on beaches (very dangerous)
▪ Biking or rollerblading dangerously in pedestrian areas
▪ Hard liquor and glass bottles
▪ Flying drones or model aircraft in parks, especially when people are endangered
▪ Daily park closings / failure to obey the various park curfews
◦ Other quality of life and safety issues, such as speeding cars, drag racing, drunk driving
▪ Rogue teams using City fields without permits or insurance
▪ Unauthorized vendors
Most of the above are NOT Police Department priorities
Mayor Martin, we ask you to save our Park Police and their current relationship to Parks Operations
-Mike Battinelli and Steve Garst, Co-Presidents, Stamford Neighborhoods Coalition
*** SAMPLE EMAIL TO MAYOR MARTIN/AND POLICE COMMISSIONERS***
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SUBJECT: SAVE OUR PARK POLICE
Dear Mayor Martin,
I am writing to ask you to maintain our Park Police and their current relationship to Parks Operations.
Park Police have a unique set of priorities that enhances public safety and quality of life in our parks. The Stamford Police Department does an admirable job making our city safe, however, the Park Police are the secret ingredient that make a person feel safe in our parks. Parks Regulations are simply not something the Stamford Police Department can give the same degree of attention to.
Here are a few recent events that I am aware of that illustrate this need:
- Homeless encampments and alcohol related deaths;
- Loud noise, speeding, unpermitted vehicles and unpermitted field use;
- Lione and Carwin Parks are very good examples of Parks that are covered by SPD. SPD now wants Park Police stationed there to correct the bad habits that have developed over time. Should this be done at the expense of the Parks where Park Police have prevented this from happening?
Mayor Martin, please eliminate the uncertainty surrounding our Park Police by authorizing the reappointment of the two officers we have. Commit your Administration to the expansion of the Park Police force to work in the same joint relationship with Parks/Operations and SPD that has served this City so well for over 50+ years.
[City, State, Zip]
cc: Tim Abbazia
Milton C. Thomas, Esq.
Stamford Neighborhoods Coalition
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