This week, NolaVie is publishing responses to Voices on Violence. The series arose as a response to the Mother’s Day shootings in New Orleans that injured 20 people. Comprised of one-on-one interviews with a diverse group of residents, it explores why and how people live here, how they assess risk, and what specific things they believe can help change the cycle of violence in New Orleans. Please join the conversation; send commentary, responses and interview suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org. The email below is from reader Lynne Hayes.
I am not a resident of New Orleans but am someone who loves and cares for this city. For over 25 years, I have dreamed of one day calling this city home and have been working toward making that a reality at the end of this summer.
When one is planning a residential move, they take into account everything from housing, the local grocers to local crime statistics.
The latter is becoming a large concern of mine and, I wonder, will the risk be worth my effort?
I am a divorced mother who has raised all of her children to young adulthood and can think of no better place to spend the rest of my life than the city on the Mississippi. Will this move be the end of my dreams due to a shooting, robbery, car theft or any of the other events which are almost hourly in NOLA?
I am not an expert in crime, but I do see a police force that is selective in their attentions and I see a generation of people (the youth) that is falling in the cracks of those age-old sidewalks, and therefore crime is their cry for help.
I realize there are no guarantees in any city one chooses to inhabit; crime is not selective to residents/tourists of New Orleans. But to be brutally honest, I’m frightened even before I have unpacked the moving van. I have many gifts I want to share with this city and its people, but will it be at the price of my life?
I will be reading and staying tuned, as this is a discussion that must be aired, shared and cared over carefully if things are ever to improve.
Voices on Violence: Conversations about life in New Orleans is a NolaVie/WWNO series that features individual interviews with the city’s residents. If you would like to be interviewed, or to comment on the series, email email@example.com.