Chicago police step up security during teachers strike - Chicago News and Weather | FOX 32 News

Chicago police step up security during teachers strike

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Student safety during the strike has Chicago police stepping up patrols. After a violence-plagued summer, parents worry their children are at greater risk not being in school.

So far, Monday has been a safe day. No kids have been shot, according to the police superintendent, but that's something that is on the forefront of many people's minds. In neighborhoods where gunfire is always a concern, the strike has more parents watching out--not just for their kids, but for others in the neighborhood as well.

In the Englewood neighborhood Monday night, the kids were out playing as adults kept a watchful eye.

It's something the parents of CPS students had to do all day because the teachers strike left them with few options. But there were plenty of concerns.

"It's very dangerous in the neighborhood, cause you never know when it's gonna actually happen, and if your kids are here all morning, all afternoon everyday, we don't know if somebody gonna actually come down the block and decide they just want to shoot," said Julius Lewis, CPS Parent.

Churches and others places did open their doors as safe havens for students to go during the day, and get breakfast and lunch.

The Salvation Army in Englewood welcomed about 20 students--not a big crowd, but for some, a difference-maker.

"It actually is and they're doing it for free, so it's gonna make a big difference," CPS aunt Carissa Johnson said.

Police will be enforcing curfew laws at night, and during each day of the strike, the superintendent says he will have extra officers out on patrol.

"Each one of those sites we have officers deployed to each one of those 144 sights," explains Chicago Police's Garry McCarthy. "There's 60 safe havens being run by libraries and churches and parks and we visit those locations to make sure they're safe also."

Monday, a group of pastors called on both sides to end the strike for the student's safety and education.

Bishop Larry Trotter of the Sweet Holy Spirit Fellowship Church says that, "at the end of the day, the issue for the pastors is the students, our kids. We don't want no more bloodshed, and we want them to have as much school time as available to them."

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