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Open air drug markets are a fact of life in too many Rochester neighborhoods. Tonight a new effort to give police new powers to take street corners away from drug dealers and give them back to residents. Neighbors fed up with open air drug markets on the streets they call home--let their voices be heard tonight.
They also listened to councilman Adam McFadden's proposal to create drug free zones to agitate the activity.
Dozens packed Rochester City Hall Wednesday night, frustrated by Rochester's open air drug markets.
Even in broad daylight a drive through Rochester's crescent is not without scenes like this.
Drug dealing out in the open--- on residential streets.
"Keep the corners clean. That activity that goes on there. The opportunity for things to happen, if there's not an opportunity, than violence can't happen," said Tracy Williams, Rochester.
Rochester city councilman Adam McFadden says he is trying to put an end to drug dealing in city neighborhoods that are rich with families trying to make an honest living and raise their children.
"They look like places that we will not allow our children to go visit. Or many of us don't want to be around. So there are businesses in the area we don't go into them. We don't walk up and down those streets because we try to avoid putting ourselves in a dangerous situation," said Adam McFadden, Rochester Councilman.
One by one tonight those who spoke put a dot on the map indicating illegal drug activity.
"It's going to take the whole city to do something about it. And I really think it is. I think we're going to have to go at this one corner at a time. And we're going to have to address one person at a time," said Carolyn Curry, Rochester.
McFadden is proposed legislation creating drug free zones, places that forbid drug activity, punishable by a fine and jail time.
"I think the way the police are policing, needs to change. I think the way they're policing, many times, don't meet the needs of the community. And so they need to be more community based and get more community input," said Keith Harris, Rochester.
Critics of the plan say it just pushes the drug activity to someone else's backyard.