WWL>Topics>>3-25-14 1:10pm Angela: on crime in the city

3-25-14 1:10pm Angela: on crime in the city

Mar 25, 2014|

Angela talks about NOLA's crime problem with New Orleans Deputy Mayor Judy Reese Morse, Royal Sonesta General Manager Al Groos, Dottie Belletto of the New Orleans Convention Company, and Kelly Schulz of the New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Well welcome to a beautiful Tuesday another another day in paradise. It is glorious they're a little cooler than we thought but still beautiful Morgan appreciate every one of those low humidity days. Three I think very interest in programs our first one I cannot wait to get into because I believe so strongly -- it -- about middle of the life. And it's about -- all of this joining hands to try to stop the murders. Not in our second hour were going to be having. Truly one of my favorite people on the face of this earth and Dan and -- who was gonna solve every single plant problem or grass problem more. Or -- problem you've ever thought -- -- and we're gonna depend on you to call in and talk today. And then for our third hour not to be missed if your baby boomer and you're thinking about retirement or -- in that phase. He'll wanna listen to this man or if you -- someone who is just starting out and you think you know what I don't have enough money to even start saving. You'll want to join us as well because I think he has some some very good ideas about that a financial planner. So but we're going to begin with stopping the shootings and murders in New Orleans is a complex and difficult effort. Two years ago mayor Landrieu says the panel PD cannot do it alone it must be -- goal of the entire community. He created no love for life. A framework to address how best to make the -- and safer. And that young men more hopeful of their future. No -- life is making slow but sure progress. As -- murder rate is going down. But there's still much work to be done. Which is why it's important that businesses and industries. Continued to jump on board we're known for life. Today were we -- members of one of New Orleans biggest industries. Who are here to tell us how they're trying to help. Kelly -- vice president of communication of the New Orleans convention and visitors center. Al gross vice president and CEO. Of royal semester hotel. Dot people -- a owner of New Orleans convention company. And from City Hall we have deputy mayor and chief of staff Judy Reese Morse we have the heavy hitters here but thought. I'm very thrilled look. I really -- because it's less than the very beginning I I believe in this I think that we have to look at. How to stop crime a little more sophisticated. -- and it is just locking people it is about how do we east stemmed the tide. And all of life is an opportunity and that's why it's good that businesses know that they've got a partner with the city. So let's start with miss Kelly Schulz. The face of tourism. As we know it and does such a beautiful job with the new world convention and visitors center. Tell us what is happening with the tourist group and -- Well the hospitality industry has come together to celebrate. And support mayor Elaine enters program they'll -- life. Certainly tourism is nor Ireland's most important industry. -- six billion dollar industry we employ people from every neighborhood in the city. And we really enhance the quality of life for all of our residents through the tourism industry but. You know we are not just supporting -- for life because. You know. Making the city safer for visitors this is very much about the hospitality industry coming together as good corporate citizens. And supporting a wonderful program that is gonna make the city better for everyone. Not just those who visit here of course -- -- our visitors to be safe and have a good experience but it's really about making the city a better place for those who live here. For those who work here and for those who made visit but it's really about making us safer stronger city and that's why we are. Coming together to support this industry and have a fund raiser events. To raise funds and also. To help find jobs for some part of the -- for life program involves stops and we certainly. Have many job opportunities with their hospitality. To me correctly that the it's about 15% were forced -- Well it's about 78000. People. That -- That have jobs related to hospitality and that's everything those are hotel executives like -- grows those are. You know Bellman bartenders its marketing professionals like myself and the people at the CVD is so it's a little bit of everything and it's it's really a a lifelong profession it's a respected industry and it's something that really makes our economy tech here in New Orleans. I think you made a very good point it. This is for our visitors -- for the many 78000 people who work in the hospitality industry it is our city. And it is our community and I think that's sort of the bottom line. To to Dottie Bledsoe and Al gross talk to me about how crime affection or businesses. Acceptances in many ways. Number one and affects our employees who live breathe and -- you with their families and make players make their lives here. -- it affects them in in in a big way and certainly from the standpoint of visitation we are very perception driven. Business. People come here because they feel good about the city they love the city and they love everything that is associated with New -- And in fact and you could almost say that we're. Our cities go through a bit of a Renaissance these days to leave you see the development in the amount of private and public dollars and that the put. Around the city whether it's into the hotels and restaurants and of course all of those more restaurants that we have another -- loves. And the convention center in the superdome and all of those various entities. We are ending see the medical center prompting -- penalties the that this is all part of our city we're in technical part of itself. And act as we grow. That perception that we are safe city is it incredibly important so. So many different levels the the perception of crime in the actual crime itself and how it affects our our population or employees. And our residents is extremely important. I would say that tourism is as one of the top industries in this in this city in and -- state. And -- we really never been looked at as a major economic development piece of this. MER as you can see the numbers you know right here how many people. In so many different types. Our business. And jobs so we need to have a safe city as as we said earlier not only for the visitors. But our our employees and for our community. And that makes for just. A better overall experience for everyone went every linking go to work and feel good about it and go home safely to their homes. And visitors can come into RC city and have an incredible all rounded experience. And it is very important for every community to feel safe and for our children to feel safe. Yeah we certainly are very misunderstood business sometimes. Angela. And what's different about us. Is that we provide jobs at every sociopath socio economic level. People with with lack of education that one start careers we take people and we train them in various industries and make it to get ahead and develop. We of people you know we are hotels for its its like little cities. We have accountants we have marketing professionals we have trades in our building second to various things we have. You know we have we have the Bellman we have the that the restaurants we have all these various things. So we have. Opportunities for a whole variety of different people in the city and that's what makes this so fantastic as an industry. It does make a fantastic and I'm just reminded them. Looking into all and I know that for a year or two after the storm. You were still trying to get the image of you know we're really not underwater anymore please come visit there was that sort of fight for awhile hopefully that's over. But I'm just curious. Are with our stature are better. The fact that we do have fewer murders we still -- crime was to have some violence but it is better. But do you all as professionals trying to get business -- still hear from people. Oh I'm staying at the murder capital or. It still rough down there. Well I guess we do we do hear that and as study said terrorism is very much based on image and perception. Angela -- we tell our visitors says. When you come to New Orleans used a common sense Nike should do when you travel to any city in America. You know be careful if you're gonna be drinking you know don't go wandering off by yourself you know be aware of your surroundings just. Use good common sense we talk about the amazing New Orleans Police Department and how there is no better police department I think in the world. That knows how to do crowd control and visitor safety and special events better than and a PG. We had a news crew come in many years ago for the first bade medical convention the American College of Cardiology this coming and in 2007 and we are working with the national news crew. And they kept asking us are you ready are you -- New Orleans ready to host this meeting in -- -- by the attendees going to be safe. And we were working with the gentlemen from NO PD and he finally said. Look 30000 people over the course of a convention he said that's one street corner during -- Kara. So it at a PG wearing very very good hands with them but it it does affect the reputation of the city and we certainly. Get questions and we handled those as best we can't. Well we're gonna take a break -- we're gonna come back and we're going to be talking to our deputy mayor. About an -- -- life specifically what it is even though we sort of have a sense of what it is. And what it means of hospitality industry is joining hands right after this and Angela on that a -- well. Well we'd been talking with Kelly Schulz is the vice president of communications for the New Orleans convention and visitors center. Al gross vice president CEO of royal semester hotel and -- the Leno owner of New Orleans convention company. About what the tourist industry is doing. To help fight crime essentially because they're joining hands with the city on the mayor's -- for life program. Our deputy mayor and chief of staff Judy -- Morse who has been our guests before and we're delighted she is back. It's gonna tell us about no -- I think everybody has heard that term but to really make the picture please draw force thank you. First of all let me just say thanks to you Angela a lot of coming on your show and I love having me. Opportunity to talk about what we're doing at city hall and to all of your guests today -- Kelly an Alley and Dottie. What tremendous leadership from a hospitality industry to put an event like this together in support of what the mayor has said is. Our city's number one priority which is murder reduction. Thank you for the chance to talk about all of polite because. It is something that we are tremendously proud of it is the city's comprehensive strategy to reduce murder in New Orleans. And it has five pillars stop the shooting is first and foremost. Invest in prevention we know how important it is to provide opportunities for young people to participate and and to make good choices and not bad choices. Promoting jobs an opportunities a crucial part of the strategy and I know we're going to talk about that a little bit later. Rebuilding neighborhoods and communities obviously. Where people live where they. You know their families where they work where they play. Where investments are made is where we have to start with this work. And then having a strong New Orleans Police Department you heard Kelly I get such beautiful accolades to. The New Orleans Police Department and let me say. I'm really happy to be here with you today to sit here and its place of mayor Landrieu who could not be with. You today Angela and with your other guest because as we speak. He's actually recognizing. The great work of the New Orleans Police Department at another event and so. We decided to split -- our workload and I have the great pleasure to be with you today but we're excited about this particular effort. Because mayor Landrieu has challenged everyone in the city of New Orleans to work with us work with our team in City Hall in. Helping to reduce the murder rate through this comprehensive strategy and we are so delighted and encouraged by the work that we've done so far. The mayor as you said launched this effort in 2012. And at the end of 2013. We saw a 20% decrease in the murder rate which was the lowest rate in nearly thirty years. So we we're very very encouraged and really motivated and inspired to continue down this road with no lawful life. We're looking for even stronger results in 2014 I think we are on track to see. Some results that the people of New Orleans are going to be very pleased with but. We know that we can't do it alone and it really takes every sector every industry in the city of New Orleans. To join us in this work and we're so pleased and so honored that the hospitality industry has stepped up to the plea. And this thing in the commercial this is the first time hospitality industries would you repeat that. Well it's a first time Angela that we've all come together Hamlet Al's leadership. He actually races Canada meeting in -- we're gonna do this. And we all came to gather the hospitality industry hasn't come together like this and I can't I don't it's never been done. Coming together to work in all of us together focused on line. Primary issue and that's Miller politeness of fund raiser. So now I'm I'm you know I'm an all your years and in -- I I I do not know of any other event like this. That we've ever done. Now I think this truly is the first time that such a large event has come together with so much talent and so much by hand from. The hospitality community and also from other partners throughout the city we've reached out to other business partners and other sectors and they're very much on board with us and I think it's important to all of us as residents and as employers in the city and -- a good all around effort I think the only. We're talking about an event people and nobody -- We're gonna tell you about it too big party it's going to be very soon into the convention center and it's 25 dollars to be the best 25 dollars spent in order to talk about that. But let's talk about how much money you raise. Is it going to go into the area. Judy that you were talking about invest in prevention. Absolutely so what is that we have created a fund that lives at the -- New Orleans foundation again another very strong partnership. With the city around no -- life and that fund houses dollars that are raised and those dollars go directly to. Social service providers. They don't pay the salaries of employees at City Hall they really focus on getting dollars to organizations that are actually doing the work. With the young people whose lives we are trying to impact and helping them to turn their lives around and give me some examples of apex is one of our strong partners cafe reconcile which a number of people may not number of your listeners may be familiar -- Liberties kitchen total community action those are just a few of the organizations that are. Partner organizations with this effort and what we do is try to provide support to them so that they can strengthen their capacity. And their ability to be able to work -- The young men in particular because when we talk about -- -- this is a very specific and very targeted. Effort it focuses around African American men between the ages of sixteen and 24 years old. And we know that there's a lot of work to be done on the younger years the younger age groups. And work to be done for those individuals who are older than 24 but our research has led us to this particular population of young people and so. That's where we placed our focus and that's where we have actually seen the greatest results and so. The jobs and opportunities peace again as one of the important parts of -- for life. Workforce development extremely important our ability to be able to identify. Individuals. Who want to work and that's one of the points that I -- I am so glad to have this opportunity distress. We're talking about young people who want the opportunity to work. Who want the opportunity to contribute to their families to their neighborhoods to their communities they want to be proud citizens. So it's this opportunity. That we're trying to match them list. After they have been well trained and well prepared because we understand that we want this to be long term we want this to be sustainable. This is not no -- is not about just matching. Young people with a job and they're not prepared in any way because obviously the employer will not be satisfied and the individual himself -- not be able to keep the job. So a lot of effort a lot of our work is being placed on that very important part about training and preparation. Getting them ready for the workforce. And then being able to match them to the opportunities and that's why having the hospitality industry stepped up the way that they are. Because of the number of hotels. And restaurants and event planning companies and all of the businesses that make this industry our top industry here in New Orleans. Their willingness to embrace this initiative and to be our partners in this work. We believe will provide some of those opportunities that we're trying to match those individuals who already wit and -- -- we're very excited about that possibility. We're talking about hope ladies and gentlemen stay with this -- going to continue this conversation but now let's go to the newsroom and Christmas. Well we're talking about we're talking about many things no love for life though is the the plan that the mayor two years ago came up with to stop the killings in the city. And does Judy -- Morse deputy mayor has explained. The numbers are coming back after the first two years and in fact our numbers are way down for the number of killings there's nobody in this rumor in the city that doesn't want to see. All shootings and all killings -- but there have to be your plan and it and and we all are so where now but it isn't just arrest and throw away it doesn't work. People get Al you know we've solved nothing. -- a full life is the five prong strategy. And the hospitality industry who are also our guest today and talking about big party they're giving this Thursday and it is to raise money. For the as is Judy resources the hard work that this time -- day in day out by so many of the non profits that are targeting. Again the ages are sixteen to 2416. To 24 young man. Who may never have been exposed to anything but a life to its gonna take them down a bad path and what we. Want to do with no lawful life is to present a different vision. A vision that really focuses on opportunity. On equity. On. Those chances that they may not have seen or experienced ever before. And this five prong approach. Focusing on prevention. Focusing on rehabilitation. On intervention and when necessary enforcement. That is the approach that we have been able to put together and we think that it is the right approach and -- -- wanna say just quickly. Mayor Landrieu has been speaking about this issue across the country. The White House has called him. There many times to come and to talk about this he's one of the leading -- mayors and our country. Focused on this particular issue it is -- absolutely complex. And very very challenging and as you have just said lots of hard work there's no way of getting around it. But we believe that it is going to deliver the results that everyone in New Orleans is is looking for and again a large part of the strategy has to do with. Workforce training and employment and opportunities and that's where businesses in the city can really step forward. And it is it's it is exposing them young people to a different world. And we all think well how come they don't see it. Well because that isn't what their world there is -- so I think -- in Al. Again your real world people. You have had now experiences with these young guys and you see in their eyes perhaps that they don't want -- like that they do want. Should be. Excited about their life and look forward to something. When out absolutely Angela and I had the pleasure of having -- -- our ambassadors and nine. No polite ambassadors to we actually hired for our company. To work through one of our major sporting events by classic. And they came and we had a training program they were assigned to a project manager. It was real work going on. And I have to share one story and it takes you'll addition I used the dedication. That they had and how much appreciation. They had to be able to have this opportunity in our offices. And they worked alongside of us and they got paid for not minimum wage much higher than that whatever that entry level for industry. I did it very fairly across the board. And at that they came and we had Thanksgiving Day parade until fast story. Had no idea they were -- walked the parade and do the security. Around my bands had no idea that four out of the nine had bullet still on their lags. That they were -- they were themselves. Shot and they made it all the way to the very and they walked almost two miles. And as soon as they got to the -- I had no knowledge of this essentially into the parade and they just collapsed and I -- why did you say some they would could've done so many other things. We wanted to do it for -- -- you we appreciate everything you've done you ask us to do it. Angelo had these young men are just a blessing. And they just want the opportunity. And yes you're right they haven't seen the inside of an office. You know I had him answering the ban and I had them on the computers. They they just want the chance they just want a helping hand. And as a result of the three weeks they were with guys several have been placed into jobs. And one in particular went into her talent it's one of our patent the larger hotels in the city. And he went in and as a entry position. I know he had to go back for second interview because he'd already gone up the latter. So you know the point of the matter is here yes we have hospitality have lots of jobs but those jobs start. And a GM level and you know I saying go for the top you know when you go and do the best you can't. These young men some of whom went to be upon are willing hotels we have facility management people. And he wants to do that. We have somebody who wants to go into energy of all things as an uninteresting he has that interest. So facilities management for any of the larger buildings incorporate all that. So the crossover in whether you work in a hotel whether you work in the buildings such as this which of Danielle is is located. You know these are opportunities that they don't know exist for them. And it it was just it was anyone that would decide to. Movable and we hope that they'll be many that will decide to move forward and mentoring these young men and giving them an opportunity. It'd be response it comes back a hundred people he can't imagine. When they calling and that fan and they say but I can't believe it's my first day on the job and I got a lot Kirk and I have you know -- uniform. And he and and there are so proud and they wanted to Wear the uniform home that to share it. So there -- family I don't know it's it's the whole thing is very thing it really is and and Allen looking at you and I'm thinking. In the hotel world I would imagine you appreciate. Long term employees. So if you hire a young man and he's starting at the bottom and you're doing everything you can to help train and encouragement. You want someone to be there Tony here's. Well you know it's one of our goals Angela. Aside from raising money -- -- that's a big goal itself it is to keep keep the program going into -- and in force for the mayor and his team. But one of our goals is to strengthen our partnerships has been quite a bit of individual partnerships with different hotels and restaurants to throughout the city. But I can tell you that you know that's we have 78000. Employers who talked about earlier. I don't know of any hotel restaurant and is looking for people all the time. They're always jobs available in the question -- to put a mechanism in place to put the right people with the right. Job in the right career path. And see if we cannot get some mentoring going on to help these people get into these jobs and hopefully become long term performers and our city. I'd just as you're speaking to. Those opportunities are there we just have to to work at it to make it to attempt to attempt to get the make the puzzle work. And accomplish these these these big goals and I think that if we. And that's one of the things we really talked about as we get this together this is just the start. Of an ongoing relationship between hospitality. And the -- and. Angela -- just inherent wanna add to the point that -- dismayed about. The importance of workforce development and training of course the city's workforce development office works very hard. To prepare young people and and people of all ages actually for those job opportunities and worked very closely with the business sector and the potential employers. But particularly around this population of young people that we're focused on again very specific focus very specific strategies. We are so excited about what this particular effort is going to lead to in the future. And Al is exactly right. There has to be a very specific process that is in place and and we are in the process of doing that. Under the umbrella of -- life. How do we make sure that the process is the right one that it is focused and targeted. So that young people of being prepared for the opportunities that are available because again. The goal is sustainability it's making sure that an employer has a very long term. And loyal employee and also making that making sure that that employee has an opportunity to build a career because we know. It only takes one person in a family to go on a different direction and to kind of blazed that trail for a particular family and everyone and that family is going to be looking to that person how did you do it. If you can do it then it's possible for me and that's what we want to focus on. We wanna send that message in neighborhoods and communities particularly. The most challenged neighborhoods and communities in New Orleans that that is a possibility so we are just ecstatic I'm so excited to talk about. Thursday but then I wanna get past Thursday and only get to all of the other work that we are now prepared to do with. The hospitality industry and in every sector quite frankly the mayor has. I think very beautifully. Set a vision for the city of New Orleans and in a month or so you're going to hear from him in the second inauguration speech. Where I think he's going to pick and giving a little home sneak preview he's gonna really focus everyone on white twenty teen. Is going to look like and he's talked about this before. But he's got such a beautiful vision for our city. And we know that we can get there everybody can get there he's talked about this nobody can be left behind -- this city will never be all that you can see. And so we've got to work together we've got to find those partnerships look for those opportunities. Have those conversations that have never been had before. Be honest with one another and talk about what has worked in the past and what could be better. And then really just get to work and really make New Orleans everything that it can be -- am excited about why we see ahead of us because I have. The people that are in this room and my dear dear dear friend and partner. I collateral who. Of course no one can see this except for us but is actually moved to tears. By the work that she has done it's that kind of commitment and passion and dedication that each one of us has MS that we -- And bring to this work that can really turn this -- but nobody saw it work and I think that's what it. We're gonna take another break we're going to be back and we're gonna talk about the big party Thursday night stay with us -- we are back talking about -- -- life I think we've heard some. Some wonderful things about it is a process it is working. We still need to do a lot of work and we still need to join hands and again that's -- the hospitality industry is doing. On Thursday night's election talk about the the entire community is invited for 25 dollars this is what you get. What you can't first -- -- participating in this wonderful event but but. One of the things that we really good at and the easy part for us is the plan a party yeah -- a plan -- that is fun. And invigorating and inspiring. And we have from six to eight will be in the press but will be in the great hall which is they beat the new the newest and greatest facility in our in our fabulous convention center. Center play's going to be has stepped up and is is -- and all of the food. And and and there are promises to a wonderful job and I'm sure they will. We have entertainment across the brass how -- -- Russians will will be there feeding off of each other and and so they'll be dancing they'll be food rupees some speeches we have to have some of those but for the most part we'll have a fun evening. Celebrating that the fund raising this fabulous car. And for 25 dollars that is a bargain ladies and gentlemen well an -- for our great friend at the Hilton and general manager of the Hilton. Is giving us the -- we called the -- parking lot which is right there next to it so. You know for them for their early comers it's going to be F five dollar fee for his lines is staying at that the entire evening. So we have a really reduce parking. That's been offered to us by other Hilton hotel thank you Pollard. And -- -- you haven't seen that great call 18 beautiful thing and what -- beautiful side. We now. Yes -- transformed. Fairly boring building something that is showstopper. You know into low -- to have someone in our industry say that the entrance to our convention center and look like the side entrance to a wal mart's own. And now it is absolutely stunning and our customers that is that -- it's really. Just an amazing facility and it's such a more grand entrance for our visitors with absolutely beautiful modern very well -- -- Ferrero has very important yes and now we have that you know. That has money that will be raced Thursday night again at the convention center 25 dollars. Judy -- is going to go to. To really help these young people get on track yes that -- and Angela. It's going directly into the no love for life fund. Which is that the great in New Orleans foundation and those dollars are then given to community service providers. That it's works specifically with the young men that we are working with who want to turn their lives around. So it's a very direct path that does not come through the city or go into the city general fund. It goes directly to the -- New Orleans foundation and just wanna use this opportunity to recognized many people who have contributed already to the fund. And help to support the work of no lawful life of course must always start with Chevron. Chevron made a one million dollar gift to the work of -- for life mr. Warner Williams and his tremendous leadership. At Chevron. And many others so contributions as small as five dollars we've had students who had events and lemonade sales. And they sent us five dollars ten dollars every single cent is so important and I and I think those for me are so. Heart warming obviously as well as the larger gifts but. These ticket sales are so important because we know we have to keep those funds available because as young men. Make that decision that very very important decision to turn their lives around. We want to be able to support the system that allows them to go to the front of the line and get the resources that they need. It can happen we can change lives -- for like stay with us we'll be right back. Invite your entire staff 25 dollars a person Thursday night at the convention center. Bring your whole office it's a way we can all help. -- look for life. Say these young people thank you Kelly Al Dottie and a deputy mayor Judy -- Morse thank you and good luck.