NBW ORLEANS— National Urban League CEO Marc Morial’s family spent some time today helping out at the mission, but one of the biggest issues on his mind is what he’s heard from residents across the country and here at home about violent crime.

According to Morial, “I’ve heard from so many people in the days I’ve been here, they’re concerns about the issue of public safety and it’s well founded.”

As mayor of the city of New Orleans his administration oversaw a reduction in crime, but that was also a different time and Morial say now tactics to fight crime must be weighed against efforts to fix flawed policing.

“In this era, we have to find ways to balance public safety with the need to reform the justice system.  And it requires intelligent, smart, effective policing, but I think it requires more than that.  It requires a commitment to strengthen, and the political will to do this has not been there, to strengthen gun safety laws,” said Morial.

The time at the mission was but a small way to give back to the New Orleans community Morial loves, but he implores all hands must be on deck to combat the country’s violent crime wave.

Morial continued, “The elected officials from top to bottom, it requires businesses, community, faith leaders to be engaged in pushing back and in fighting back. I say don’t look for quick fixes and fast solutions, but also don’t sit on your hands and do nothing. Don’t throw your hands up.”

The former mayor also admitted that cities need more funding to enhance police departments and programs like reentry and recreation for young people and that the National Urban League is lobbying on behalf of those efforts. Some of that funding rests inside of the Biden Administration’s Build Back Better bill which they’re also fighting to get passed.