Buffalo - Mayor Byron W. Brown announced today the official start of the 2019 Clean Sweep initiative. Over the next six months, the Save Our Streets (SOS) Task Force plans to conduct over 33 ‘Clean Sweeps’ to assist in the delivery of services throughout the City of Buffalo, including a few late afternoon/early evening ‘sweeps’. Mayor Brown was also joined by Buffalo Police Commissioner Byron C. Lockwood, BPD’s new Crisis Intervention Team Coordinator Captain Amber Beyer, a certified mental health instructor, as well as participating officers of the BPD Neighborhood Engagement Team (NET) who will continue to expand their presence at ‘Clean Sweep’ events to ensure a more visible presence of law enforcement in neighborhoods citywide.
“I am proud of the continued collaboration between so many community partners and commend the efforts of Clean Sweep participants to improve the overall quality of life in Buffalo,” said Mayor Brown. “We’ve made it a priority to address blight and quality of life issues in each City Council District and I look forward to beginning another year of Clean Sweeps for the benefit of our residents and their neighborhoods.”
Throughout the 2019 Clean Sweep season, the SOS Task Force will offer essential quality of life services to residents including: dental services, health insurance enrollment, homeless outreach, fire prevention education, disaster preparedness, mental health services, youth and senior programming information, employment and training referrals, tree trimming, boarding and demolishing vacant homes, removing debris and abandoned tires, filling potholes, cleaning sewer receivers, offering 311 information to assist in addressing neighborhood complaints.
The Save Our Streets Task Force is part of the Division of Citizen Services, and is comprised of various City, County, State, Federal, government, not for profit and private agencies tasked with the mission to fight the war of blight and crime. More than 100 participants, representing 25 agencies and law enforcement organizations, took part in today’s quality of life event, including some new participants.
Today’s Clean Sweep kick-off included BPD’s new Crisis Intervention Team Coordinator, Captain Amber Beyer, a certified mental instructor, who is providing the tools and information officers need to better respond to those with mental health issues. She is also gearing up to implement a new mental and behavioral health detail in the police department that will have a presence at weekly Clean Sweep events.
Additionally, the BPD NET (Neighborhood Engagement Team) will continue its present throughout the Clean Sweep season, for the second consecutive year. Officers who make up BPD NET will spend approximately two weeks in a number of designated neighborhoods, engaging the community and further strengthening the relationship between
police officers and residents. They will provide high visibility foot and mobile patrols, address problem areas and problem properties, Work with the Dept. of Community Services’ Division of Citizen Services, District Community Police Officers and School Resource Officers, Dept. of Permit and Inspections, and Dept. of Public Works, Parks and Recreation, as well as the Police Athletic League of Buffalo.
The Clean Sweeps program began during the time of Mayor Brown’s predecessor, Mayor Anthony Masiello. Since taking office, Mayor Brown has expanded the scope and impact of the Save Our Streets Task Force, which will result in over 321 neighborhood clean sweeps since 2006, by the end of this year.