Chicago police summer safety plan juggles DNC, festivals, parades, concerts, teens and more

Karen Jordan Image
Thursday, May 2, 2024
Chicago summer safety plan juggles DNC, festivals, parades, concerts and more
Chicago police are preparing for a very busy summer.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Chicago police are preparing for a very busy summer. The department has been strategizing how to staff the Democratic National Convention in August in addition to multiple neighborhood festivals, parades and concerts, as well as marquee events like Lollapalooza and the Air and Water Show.

"We do have a focus on what's happening in the neighborhoods because we understand that the DNC is not the only show in town, so we have to keep our communities safe," said CPD Supt. Larry Snelling.

Snelling outlined to a city council committee the department's plans. He said CPD has already been training for a year on how to handle large-scale protests at the DNC, while allowing for the first amendment rights of protestors.

Alderman Walter Burnett, whose 27th Ward includes the United Center where the DNC will be headquartered, said he has confidence that the department's extensive preparation will make for a successful convention.

"Secret Service and the police department have been very willing to give their time to people in the community, to talk to them," he said.

Snelling said officers may not be able to have days off or take vacation during the DNC but is ensuring that leading up to the convention they can have time off if needed.

"If we give them notice prior to this so they can plan around day off cancellations and long days, it's helpful to their families," Snelling said.

Another concern is preventing teen takeovers. Snelling said CPD is working with their community partners to keep young people engaged and productive.