Law enforcement teams up with community leaders at Christmas event for local children
SCOTLANDVILLE - Community leaders and law enforcement teamed up for a Christmas celebration Saturday.
In efforts to inspire children, Baton Rouge police officers are showing kids what community and Christmas are really about.
"Someone that's here to see to their needs, to see to their safety. I think it's important for them to see us a more of a positive light," Sgt. Elvin Howard of the Baton Rouge Police Department said.
Pat McCallister-LeDuff with "Community Against Drugs and Violence" hosted the event "Holiday in the Park" in Scotlandville.
She made sure to have police there, "to show them it's a job, a career they can actually have, as opposed to someone-to-be-afraid-of," McCallister-LeDeuff said.
One parent, Kenyatta Pitts, brought her children to the event not for the free gifts, but with the intent to educate them on the importance of law enforcement.
"Nowadays there's so much going on on the streets that the kids actually think that police are against them. Some of them are not against them. They're there to help them and protect them," Pitts said.
Officers at the event believe that when building a relationship with a community, it's important to reach the children in that area at an early age.
"When you catch them at an early age, they are impressionable. Their mind is just starting to develop, that's the best time to input a positive influence into them," Sgt. Howard said.