As Brian Straw runs for Oak Park village trustee, I urge readers to become familiar with his approach to public safety, especially gun violence. I agree with him that crime and gun violence are equity issues — they disproportionately impact marginalized communities.

I’m struck by how deeply Brian Straw has engaged and reflected on these complex issues, and I fully support his plan to address them in Oak Park. Policing and the fear around policing impacts the Black community, not only in Chicago but also here in Oak Park. The answer is not simply more police but a holistic approach that engages mental-health responders and community engagement in police accountability.

I invite you to join me in voting for Brian Straw, as he will help the village board embrace the complexity of public safety with a real heart for justice.

Alan Taylor
Oak Park

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