On last night’s Channel 4 News at 11:00 pm, there was an excellent segment featuring some of our neighborhood advocates, including block captain Joan Fitzpatrick.
A month ago, Joan noticed that the street lights on her block of Stanley Avenue were no longer working, and the street was very dark at night. Then she started to notice that other nearby blocks had also lost their street lights.
It turns out that thieves are stealing the copper cables from the base of street lights throughout the Los Angeles region, rendering the lights inoperable until repaired. The price of copper has risen in recent years, leading to widespread copper thefts.
Joan complained repeatedly to the City and LA DWP – all to no avail. The lights stayed off.
Then Joan upped the ante and contacted John Darnell, our field deputy in the office of City Council member Paul Koretz. For good measure, she and her neighbors did an interview about the problem with Channel 4, and the segment aired last night.
The result? Before the news segment even aired, the DWP was out fixing the problem. The street lights are now working again on Stanley Avenue.
The moral? The squeaky wheel gets the grease – especially in a city as large as Los Angeles. Joan did exactly the right thing by refusing to sit idly by while the problem got worse and the City did nothing.
Thanks also to John Darnell, and to Joan’s neighbors who helped her out.
You can see the NBC4 segment here.