NEW ORLEANS - District "C" Councilmember Kristin Gisleson Palmer has released the following statement congratulating her former colleague Jason Williams on his inauguration to the Orleans Parish District Attorney's Office and requests special Council meeting to address recent crime incidents:
"I would like to congratulate my colleague Councilmember Jason Williams on his impending inauguration to the District Attorney’s Office. I have always been impressed by his passion to improve our criminal justice system. While Councilmember Williams and I often stood shoulder to shoulder on reform actions, there were also times we did not see eye to eye. However, I believe in the end we always worked toward solutions to the benefit of our constituents. Our City’s success depends in part on the success of his office, and I want to offer my full support. I look forward to seeing his leadership on efforts to improve public safety in our community.
In my experience, it takes wide-spread, collaborative approaches to address the City's more intractable issues. It is clear we are experiencing a crime increase that has reached crisis levels in our neighborhoods, driven in part by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Halting and reversing this troubling trend requires public safety, criminal justice, and community-oriented organizations to come together in a smart and strategic way.
I am sending the attached letter to Council President Helena Moreno asking her to call a special City Council meeting in the immediate future dedicated solely to this issue. I would be grateful for the District Attorney's attendance at this meeting. For this to succeed, we would also need to include participation from the New Orleans Police Department, Orleans Public Defenders, Criminal District Court, Juvenile Court, the Office of Youth and Families, and key community groups, allowing them to share actions they have already taken and present their plans for addressing the problem moving forward. I am further calling on all of my colleagues to consider spending from the Entergy settlement to provide immediate funding solutions for the highest needs areas and demonstrate the Council's intent to participate in solutions.
While 2021 offers a fresh start, many of the social and economic debts of 2020 remain for us to pay. Only through strong partnerships and coordinated action can we pull our City through these dark times and put us back on the path towards equitable growth."
View the letter here.
Director of Communications and Special Projects
District "C" Councilmember Kristin Gisleson Palmer