DETROIT (WWJ) — Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan pounded the pavement on the East Side Saturday morning to try to drum up volunteers for the annual Angel’s Night campaign.
Duggan knocked on several doors and all respondents promised to help patrol or leave their lights on each night from October 29 through Halloween.
Larry Douglas was one of the residents who answered the door — and the call — as he sported his bath robe and his one-year-old daughter when Duggan came knocking.
“I’m 46-years-old and I’ve never seen him walk the streets like this and get out to talk to people,” Douglas said. “It’s an honor to meet the mayor.”
Duggan went to door-to-door on Carlisle St. near 8 Mile and Kelly and said he was surprised at the number of vacant homes on the street. Duggan assured neighbors that he would concentrate on filling them up with families as part of his nuisance abatement program.
“This is the early stages,” Duggan said. “I can show you the cycle of a neighborhood over and over again, but in two or three years, these houses will be stripped, burned and the neighborhood will be gone if we don’t get in here. These are exactly the kinds of neighborhoods where we’re filing our nuisance abatement suits, because we absolutely can sell those houses to families that want to move in there.
“What we’ve seen on this block is what we’re seeing all over the city, which is Detroiters are fighters,” Duggan said. “I think people feel the city coming back and city hall can’t do it all.”
Another resident was happy to abide with Duggan because his son regularly plays with friends in the neighborhood.
“I like the street, I like the neighborhood,” he said. “My son plays out here all the time — he and his friends are out here playing all the time — so, you know, it has to be safe out here.”