The annual National Night Out event was held on August 2 in Erie County. This was an effort to bring the community together and bridge the gap between law enforcement and people.
One of the main goals of National Night Out is to create a partnership between the police and community and to speak out against crime.
We decided to go to one of the locations where there was an increase in crime and shootings. We wanted to see if National Night Out helped this area.
On Tuesday night, the Erie community took part in National Night Out.
The event is more than just fun games and free food, it’s about preventing crime and creating a bond between the community, police officers, and firefighters.
“I think it’s great. I think seeing them out here seeing all of the neighborhood folks out here I think it’s great,” said Steven George, Erie Resident.
Throughout Erie County, 16 events took place on Tuesday night.
We took a visit to Gridley Park which was an area that had a recent increase in crime.
We wanted to know how events such as this could make people feel safer in their own neighborhood.
“I think it shows the community one we care. We are part of the community and we are going to do what it takes to make it safer for everybody,” said Chris Campanelli, Sheriff.
Having a strong police presence at National Night Out helps the community because it gives people the opportunity to meet some of the officers that are protecting the city.
“I think it’s good that they are trying to all come together and collaborate and make everyone feel comfortable with each other,” said Chala Harned, Erie Resident.
Representatives from United Way of Erie County, one of the main sponsors for this event, said that it’s important for local organizations to team up and support the community.
“It’s just a small piece of collaborative efforts to address violence in our community. I think when you look at things all together that is how we are going to see a difference with unity working together,” said Mike Jaruszewicz, VP of Community Impact for United Way of Erie County.
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We also spoke to Our West Bayfront who organizes the National Night Out events.
They said that it helps when people can see police out in the community instead of just seeing them during emergency situations.