It takes a village!
If we can’t rely on the police, who can we call? This question is on our minds more than ever as officers across the country repeatedly prove to be the most dangerous people in our communities. How do we prevent violence instead of waiting for police after it happens and hoping they don’t make the situation worse?
According to TMZ, a group of fathers in Shreveport, Louisiana took matters into their own hands in response to a series of fights that led to 23 student arrests in two weeks. The watch group calls themselves “Dads on Duty.” About 40 volunteers take shifts monitoring the hallways, greeting students, and patrolling school grounds. The first few arrests didn’t prevent the violence from continuing at Southwood High School, but the dads prove there’s a better way than the school-to-prison pipeline we have now.
“We’re dads. We decided the best people who can take care of our kids are who? Are us,” said Michael LaFitte, who started Dads on Duty.
Armed with an endless supply of corny dad jokes and those stern dad looks that make you tighten up with a quickness, the new watch group is already making a difference. CBS reports that there have been no fights or violent outbursts since the Dads on Duty squad arrived on campus in September.
“I immediately felt a form of safety. We stopped fighting; people started going to class,” one of the students said.
The dads are proud to have a supportive presence as father figures for the whole school. They look forward to expanding to chapters throughout the rest of Louisiana, and eventually, across the country. The story is already inspiring others.
Dads on Duty, thank you for your service! Do you know a community that could use a chapter of its own?