It's no secret that there is a critical shortage of police in Philadelphia.
It's no secret that there is a critical shortage of police in Philadelphia. Recently, Gravers Lane neighbors learned directly from a 14th District police officer that "there are no police assigned to Chestnut Hill on the weekends." This distressing fact was confirmed by Officer Johnson at the 14th District, who stated that "It depends on how many officers are out sick or on vacation on any given day, but it isn't uncommon for there to be only three to four police cars for the entire 14th District." Given also that 911 calls are prioritized, it leaves our community even more vulnerable.
Perhaps it's time for Chestnut Hill to implement what other areas of the city have decided is necessary for the safety of their communities: Private security patrols.
Both the Fishtown - Kensington Business Improvement District and Society Hill communities have raised funds for and implemented private security. Interviews with neighbors and businesses can be found both in print and on social media that refer to the palpable relief that the community feels from the extra protection. Additionally, Fishtown businesses have invested in high grade security cameras along the business corridor.
As the Crime Report section of the Local gets longer and longer, and the severity of crime creeps upwards and is now replete with kidnappings, rapes, squatters and armed robberies, perhaps it’s time to request a forum hosted by the Community Association to discuss the pros and cons of hiring private security for Chestnut Hill. The lack of police isn't going to be solved anytime soon, nor is the lack of leadership in the City. And, it's not as if we will lose police presence by having private security; apparently, we haven't any to lose.