San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott made the rounds to three block parties on Tuesday, Aug. 3 to promote police-community partnerships at the once-annual National Night Out campaign.
Here/Say Media rode with Chief Scott as he stopped by events in the Bayview, Mission Terrace and Ingleside neighborhoods and liaised with community members and fellow officers.
“Having officers in the community policing the right way and talking about developing relationships, being present, being visible—it does make a difference,” said Chief Scott. “When that's done the right way, people tend to feel more safe.”
In front of crowds of families enjoying barbecues and games, Chief Scott spoke about the importance of community policing and touched on challenges—specifically around perceptions of safety—that the city faces.
“This city has some challenges that we will get through. We’ve done some great work together and we will continue to do some great work together. Police, community, together. That’s how we get it done,” he said.
The debate over safety in San Francisco has been a hot-button topic lately, with Chief Scott and Mayor London Breed recently coming together at SFPD headquarters to push back against the growing narrative that San Francisco is becoming less safe.
“We've had some pretty brazen crimes that have occurred here and they've gotten international coverage and so you see them over and over again,” said Chief Scott. “So we really have to do what we can to deal with the fear of crime, because it's a real issue. It's real to people.”
Video by Mike Kuba; Interview by Christina Campodonico