Skokie Voice forum returns to public safety
Lisa Lipin, chairwoman of Skokie Voice, introduces an earlier community forum on education. Next week'sSkokie Voice forum will focus on public safety. | Mike Isaacs~Sun-Times Media
PUBLIC SAFETY COMMUNITY FORUM
SPONSOR: Skokie Voice residents’ association
WHEN: 7 p.m. June 20
WHERE: Oakton Community Center, 4701 Oakton St., Skokie
WHAT: Focus on public safety with presentations and opportunities for public to ask questions and have their voices heard.
Updated: July 15, 2012 2:53PM
In some ways, Skokie Voice’s community forum on public safety next week brings the active residents’ association back to full circle.
Before Skokie Voice became an organized group, residents two years ago pushed for a town hall meeting that drew hundreds of people and was attended by key village officials. Residents wanted a forum to express concerns about village life, but among the biggest concerns voiced that night related to public safety.
Since that time, Skokie Voice got off the ground, formed committees and worked with Skokie Police to address some of the issues they raised.
Flash forward two years and Skokie Voice will hold a forum next week specifically dedicated to public safety again.
“Village officials will review current crime trends,” Skokie Voice states. “Skokie Voice will summarize how its Community Safety and Housing committees have communicated residents’ public safety concerns to village officials over the last year.”
A topic certain to be addressed is a controversial plan by the village to license all multi-family rental units in the village. Some landlords have vehemently objected to the proposal, but Skokie Voice has endorsed it.
Skokie Voice’s public safety community forum was scheduled before a tragic accident that occurred May 21 near Main Street and St, Louis Avenue. A driver had an accident with another vehicle while making a turn and lost control, killing an 8-year-old child who was on the sidewalk out for a bike ride.
The driver was arrested for allegedly driving under the influence of drugs and cited with a stop-sign violation.
Organizers believe it’s likely safety issues surrounding the tragedy will also be addressed next week. In the wake of the tragedy, the village has taken aggressive action in studying conditions around schools and formed an action committee to make recommendations for improvements near the accident scene.
Scheduled for next week’s panel are Skokie Police Chief Tony Scarpelli, Village Manager Al Rigoni and Village Trustee Randy Roberts. A period for questions from audience members is also part of the forum.
Like all of its successful community forums, Skokie Voice is offering an on-line survey ahead of time to help shape questions and issues to be addressed.
Some of the questions ask about the amount of police presence in the area over the last year; changes in opinion about safety over the last year; village communication with residents about safety; the effectiveness and responsiveness of Skokie Police; and recommended measures for the future.
To take the survey, access www.skokievoice.org.