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Yun to Mayor on page 7 of Jersey Journal...

Did you see this in today's paper?

Rally was about Public Safety, NOT a ?malicious, orchestrated ambush!?

Dear Mayor Jerramiah Healy:

By the end of 2006, Community Leaders throughout Jersey City began organizing a citywide effort to address concerns with Policing. As many ?Quality of Life? issues have evolved into ?Life Threatening? issues, experiencing crime (in general) is a part of everyday life and an adverse reality in Jersey City. The people of Jersey City are desperately looking for a strong proactive system of policing now more then ever. It was the intention of community organizers to bring this very important issue to your attention at a citywide public safety rally where citizens would be able to voice their distressed concerns. Please observe:

January 5, 2007 - A letter was sent to the Mayor?s Office via certified mail (#7005 0390 0002 9278 5450) announcing our intention and inviting you, the Police Director, and Chief to speak at a rally originally scheduled for Feb. 20th.

February 9, 2007 - Because your office did not provide a response, organizers called to confirm your attendance to the scheduled Public Safety Rally. Despite receiving a thirty five (35) day advance notice, your office informed organizers eleven (11) days before the event that you just scheduled the ?State of the City Address? on the very night of the rally. As a result, efforts spent on advertising this event for Feb 20th were wasted on fliers and meetings with over 50 Block Association Leaders citywide nonetheless, we respected your decision to book Feb 20th as the date for the first ?State of the City Address? in four years. At the suggestion of your scheduler, the meeting was postponed to March 7th for your convenience. Your scheduler accepted this invitation on your behalf and confirmed it by email.

February 12, 2007 - In addition to the email, a confirmation letter via certified mail (#7005 0390 0002 9278 5474) was delivered to your office confirming, yet again, your attendance to the rally on Wed. March 7th.

March 5, 2007 - Full page ads ran in two (2) local newspapers announcing the Public Safety Rally on the 7th. The ads announced guest speakers Mayor Healy, Police Director Jefferson, and Police Chief Comey.

March 7, 2007 - On a night with unfavorable weather conditions including blistering cold and snow flurries, two hundred plus (200+) people from all parts of the City crowded the Abundant Joy Community Church in search of their Mayor. Approximately at 6:40 pm (10 min after the scheduled start of the meeting) Chief Comey announced your decision to support a local basketball team vs. attending a prior commitment to discuss policing issues with your concerned constituents.

Prior to the Chief?s announcement, NO ONE had indicated that you would be absent at the rally. Any telephone call, message, email, smoke signal, homing pigeon, or other communication from your office FAILED to reach organizers at the start of the rally. The Jersey Journal printed an article on 3/9/07 containing unprovoked and inconceivable accusations by your spokesperson, Stan Eason. Your spokesperson blasted the event as a ?malicious, orchestrated ambush? and nothing could be further from the truth.

NOTE: With two hundred witnesses in attendance, I purposely paused the rally at several points to reiterate its objective: ?This rally is about a public safety issue, not a political issue.? Never once during the rally did I capitalize on the opportunity to slander you for not attending. Needless to say, however, your constituents who did take the time to attend the rally were very vocal about their disappointment using words such as ?insulting? and ?disgraceful? to describe their feelings on your absence. Perhaps Stan Eason manipulated the facts on behalf of his own political agenda to discredit the true intention of the rally, the public, and yes even you, Mayor Healy.

Honorable Mayor, the people of Jersey City care as much about public safety as you do. A strong relationship between the Mayor?s office, the Jersey City Police Department, and the public must exist to win the war on crime. We hope that you can resolve the communication issues within your office before the next rally takes place six months from now.
Respectfully Submitted

Michael Yun,
A Concerned Jersey City Tax Payer

P.S. Rally organizers thank JCPD Director, Samuel Jefferson and the Chief of Police, Tom Comey for addressing the concerns of the public at the rally despite the absence of the Mayor?s guidance. The public is truly grateful to have had other policy makers at the meeting including Hudson County Prosecutor, Edward De Fazio; Councilman-at-Large, Peter Brennan; Councilman Ward C, Steve Lipski; Councilman Ward D, Bill Gaughan; Councilman Ward E, Steven Fulop; and Hudson County Freeholder Jeff Dublin who all took the time to hear the concerns of the people regarding Public Safety. A special thanks to all the community leaders, block associations, the Jimmy King Civic Association, and all others for participating in this event.

Posted on: 2007/3/14 21:03

Re: Mayor’s “State of the City Address” Squashes Citywide Public Safety Rally

Jersey City, NJ - High Taxes, High Crime. Where?s the Protection? That is the question many Jersey City residents will be asking Mayor Jeramiah Healy, Police Director Samuel Jefferson, and Chief of Police Thomas Comey at a citywide Public Safety Rally scheduled for 6:30 PM Wednesday March 7, 2007 at the Abundant Joy Community Church aka the ?Central Avenue Reform Church? located 137 Bowers St., Jersey City.

Although Jersey City has evolved dramatically over the past twenty five (25) years, some public services, such as policing, have not kept up with the changes. For a City with a population of 240,000 people (U.S. Census Bureau), the Jersey City Police Department is staffed with an estimated 850 police officers. Despite increasing taxes and the recent real estate boom experience, the City of Jersey City has not improved the infrastructure of its police department or its level of service to the public.

The people of Jersey City have had ENOUGH! In an attempt to better serve our great City, the community leaders of Jersey City are organizing a citywide rally to address ongoing public safety concerns with elected officials.

Policy makers have allowed the City to fall into a reactive (vs. proactive) system of policing. The police department typically reacts to crime by taking complaints from citizens instead of taking proactive measures to prevent it from happening in the first place. Band-Aid solutions like this take the place of well planned preventative measures such as creating strong police presence thru lasting community policing programs.

Accountability has become a major concern at the department as it has seen four (4) Chiefs in as little as four (4) years. New Chiefs always bring personnel changes within the JCPD. In what has become a yearly shuffling of personnel, this instability has jeopardized the department?s overall accountability and service to the public. As an example, one out of four Jersey City Police Stations (North District) saw at least five (5) district commanders in those four years.

Politics has a long history in the JCPD and it clearly continues today. Police officers (retired and active) are seen working in other capacities of City government more now then ever before. Some of these rolls include high-profile political appointments such as department directors and aids to elected officials. Several police officers are so involved with politics that they have been City Council and Mayoral candidates in recent elections. When political affiliations are rewarded, the morale of hardworking men and women within the department are undermined.
From a tax payer?s point of view, even the system of dispatching police officers for Jersey City?s four (4) established police districts (North, South, East, & West) is a disservice to the public. There was a time when each police station had a strong relationship with the community and citizens could directly call in complaints. Anyone who calls into their local police station today will be instructed to call the dispatch room (201.547.5477) and have their complaint placed on a list of generic priorities (Violent Crimes is a high priority vs. a group of teens loitering, lower priority). This bottle necking procedure delays police response to all non-violent crimes throughout the City. Each district has unique demographics requiring police service to be customized for its tax paying constituents. What is considered a high priority to the residents in one section of the city might be considered a low priority in another. Is this system of dispatching police the best solution to serve the public or a system of convenience for the department?

While the murder rate reached a twenty three (23) year high in 2005, experiencing crime has become part of everyday life and an adverse reality in today?s Jersey City. Many citizens are calling for police protection from growing gang activity, drug dealing, and the other crimes occurring in broad daylight. Many ?quality of life? issues have evolved into ?life threatening? issues causing many residents, especially seniors, to think twice before taking to the streets alone.

The people of Jersey City are asking public officials to answer to three fundamental public needs within the JCPD: Presence, Protection, and Accountability. Realizing the limited resources of tax dollars to increase JCPD man power, innovative management is needed now more then ever at the JCPD. The time has come for Public Policy on safety to change with the times. As part of what could be a comprehensive solution, people are calling for the creation of a Jersey City Civilian Review Board.

The intent of this board (representative of the public and Neighborhood Block Associations leaders) is to reestablish the relationship between the JCPD and community. Their mission would consist of following up on community complaints on crime and question department behavior considered political. The board will shift focus away from local politics while encouraging the moral of diligent police officers who have truly dedicated their lives to serve and protect the public.

The time to demand change is now, not after you or a loved one has been victimized. High Taxes, High Crime. Where?s the Protection?

Posted on: 2007/2/13 16:04

Mayor’s “State of the City Address” Squashes Citywide Public Safety Rally

Jersey City, NJ - Originally scheduled for February 20th, a citywide effort to organize a Public Safety Rally has been postponed for 6:30 PM Wednesday March 7, 2007 at the Abundant Joy Community Church aka the ?Central Avenue Reform Church? located 137 Bowers St., Jersey City. Invited guest speakers include Mayor Jerramiah Healy, Police Director Samuel Jefferson, and Chief of Police Thomas Comey. The entire City Council of Jersey City along with the New Jersey Attorney General, Stuart Rabner, and Hudson County Prosecutor, Edward J. De Fazio, have also been invited to attend.

Despite organizers? best efforts over the last two (2) months to confirm the Mayor?s attendance; it was only recently that the Mayor?s office confirmed a conflict of schedule for the original date. Not only will the Mayor not be able to attend, but he will be conducting the first ?State of the City Address? in nearly four (4) years calling the attention of all other municipal officials and department directors including those who have already confirmed for the rally. As a consolation prize, the North District Commander was offered to substitute the Mayor, Police Director, and Chief of Police on the original date. Needless to say, the rally was postponed to the later date as to include the original three guest speakers. The Mayor?s office has already confirmed this date.

Posted on: 2007/2/13 16:03




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