Letters to the Editor
... input from forum participants


Join Sheriff Baca - the youth in the community, leaders of tomorrow, need you

Dec. 17th

My name is Elder Charles Price, and I am a man of God who love the youth in our city. I do not use the word "LOVE" loosely, but I let action speak for it self. I am a clergy for the Southwest and Wilshire Police department.

In the months of October, November, and December our community has seen unprecedented Youth Violence. We have reached the highest murder rate in the Los Angeles County history. What can we do to "Stop the Violence" that has become a part of our daily lives?

As a start, I have been working with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, Clergy Council, and Bishop Edward R. Turner, on a "United We Stand" Multi-Faith Prayer Breakfast and Community Day on January 18th, 2003 from 9:00 am to 3: 00 pm.

The goal of the "Multi-Faith Prayer Breakfast and Community Day" is to strengthen and unite all people regardless of race, color, creed, age, or religion. As part of the Youth Empowerment Program and Community Resources Program, we are inviting our Youth (Gang members or not) and the Law Enforcement community (Police Department, Sheriff Department, Office of The City Attorney, and any other) to participate in a "Dialogue of Change".

There has to be a relationship of trust between Law Enforcement of today and the men and women ("Youth of Today") of tomorrow. Once we build a relationship of trust, people will feel comfortable, and be more willing to come forward with information to the police.

Since I am heading up this Dialogue of Committee, I like for people to know what I'm fighting for and what I see. This "Dialogue of Change" with the "Youth and Law Enforcer (Police Department and Sheriff Department) is only a beginning in the right direction. Understand this! one meeting is not going to set everything right for the "Youth (Gang Members/or Not) and Law Enforce). But! it's the start of bringing every one to the table, their "will be" more of this type of meetings.

A 1991 (this is 2002, so what I'm stating is an understatement) federal study showed that 1.6 million children ages 14 and younger were coming home to no adult supervision after school. A youth have less adult supervision in their lives than ever before. Without caring individuals to provide support, counsel, and role modeling our youth of today are vulnerable to the destructive forces of poverty, drugs, and violence. We need to come together and fight what our youth are going through:

School failure: California is the 43 worst state in the number of youth who are neither attending school nor working. In 1993 the school dropout rate of teenagers was 15.3%. Of those youth who finish high school, less than 1/3 are prepared for college.

Teen pregnancy: California's rate of teen pregnancy id 21% higher than the national average, ranking it as the 42nd worst state in the nation. Almost 12% of all births in California are teen mothers.

Gangs and violence: California is the 46th worst state in the nation in the number of juveniles arrested for violent crime. There are between 175,000 and 2000,000 criminal street gang members in California including 55,000 in Los Angeles County alone.

Every young person in our community (and other communities) has potential. Kids deserve the opportunity to pursue their dreams. Today, more then ever, changes in our society pose problems for kids that may seem insurmountable. With the erosion of neighborhood, community and family support networks, at risk children often fail academically, become involved in crime, drugs, sex or violence. We as mentor / caring people / ministries / pastors / police officers / sheriff's can make a difference. We can help kids discover their self worth, their talents, their dreams.

Children need positive role models. They need a resource, a confidant, a friend, someone to help them make positive choices in life, someone to help them think about consequences before they act. They need someone who will listen. They need a mentor. God is going to hold us the people and the church, accountable for our lack united work in the community. The youth in the community, they are the leaders of tomorrow, they need you, Bishop / Elder / Pastor / Priest / Business Owner / Police Officers / Sheriff's / Honest Caring People!

This is who I am and what I am.

For more information on the Sheriff Baca Community Day 2003 and it's Multi-Faith Prayer Breakfast, please call (323) 753-4673 or visit

Take care, on visiting, you'll get hooked on helping your and other communities.

You can also contact me at

Elder Charles Price
Southwest, Wilshire

Lord Jesus, let Your Anointing fall on this reader this day.
Let the Oil of your Spirit purify them now.
Take them now Lord and make them Yours.
Take Them Now Lord, Take Them Now With Your Anointing.