CHICAGO (CBS) — President Barack Obama addressed the nation’s police chiefs on Tuesday with a message: the crime burden is not just on your shoulders.
The president brought also up his own Chicago neighborhood when he talked about combatting street violence, saying shootings sometimes take place near his house. He says that makes violence very real to him.
CBS 2’s Dana Kozlov talked with people on the South Side, where the words about gun violence often ring the loudest.
At Englewood’s Dream Cafe, President Barack Obama’s words resonated.
“I reject any narrative that divides police and the communities they serve,” Obama said.
“I thought that was a very powerful way to start his speech,” said Asiaha Butler with the Resident Association of Greater Englewood.
We played her some of the president’s speech to police chiefs, which focused on policing in volatile areas and bridging gaps between officers and minority communities…communities that often feels besieged.
“I think it’s great that he’s having this conversation and this conference is happening,” Butler said. “I really hope that it actually reaches the ground.”
Both Butler and cafe manager Duane Powell especially appreciated Obama mentioning problem such as ,”substandard education, shortage of jobs and opportunity, an absence of drug treatment programs.”
Powell says that gets closer to the root of the problem and believes the community can help.
“We actually need to do our own soul searching and figure out what we can do ourselves as citizens in our homes with our children with our communities,” Powell said.