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Neighbor to Neighbor: St. Gregory the Great hosts police breakfast

Police...

By Barbara Morris

Space limitations sometimes make us defer reporting on important events and issues. This is catch-up time. On May 18 Patrol Borough Queens South held its second annual community breakfast at Saint Gregory the Great, 244-44 87th Ave. in Bellerose.

Police and community meetings are always interesting. This one was particularly so because many there met Patrol Borough Queens South’s new commanding officer, Assistant Chief Thomas Dale.

The opening and closing of such events by the Ceremonial Unit (on this occasion, Detective Allan Kilfoyle) and the singing of our national anthem by Officer Carl Dixon attest to the fact that these dedicated New York Police Department people are not only prepared to enforce the laws of our city and protect us but they are also part of the even larger force protecting our country.

Their duties seem to increase daily as do the dangers they face. It seems appropriate to pass along to you the poem that was included in the program and distributed that day.

A Police Officer’s Prayer

“Dear Lord, be with me on my beat

This day and everyday,

Grant that each weary block I walk

May ease a person’s way.

Let me be kindly to the old and

To the young be strong,

But let me triumph over those

Whose acts are cruel and wrong.

And when my own last summons comes

And I stand in Your court,

Lord, may my rest with You be long and

My punishment be short.”

How nice it would be if we would all ease our burdens by trying to live by the laws and even go a step further by trying to encourage others to do the same. Parents, too, have added responsibilities. At the breakfast, the 105th Precinct’s former crime prevention officer, Don Barto (now the crime prevention specialist at Patrol Borough Queens South), distributed Internet safety tips for parents.

He strongly suggests keeping the computer out of your child’s bedroom. He said, “If your children are properly supervised, educated and monitored when using the Internet, it can be a safe and enjoyable experience for the entire family.”

The family rule should be to keep the computer in the family room so that there may be child/parent involvement. You may also decide to use filtering features that are built into Internet browsers (“the software you use to access the World Wide Web”). There is also a site called Teen Safety on the Information Highway at www.missingkids.com.

The family rule must also include an agreement with your child “never to give out identifying information like home address, school name or telephone numbers.”

According to Barto, children must never arrange a face-to-face meeting with another computer user or respond to “messages or bulletin board items that are suggestive, obscene, belligerent, threatening or make you feel uncomfortable.” He also stated, “Other useful tools are software programs that block Web sites, news groups and chat areas that are known to be inappropriate.”

For further information on this subject, contact PBQS Crime Prevention Specialist Don Barto at 718-969-7103.

Gang violence is another problem parents and community members face. Although the Eastern Queens Alliance’s June 12 workshop is said to be about parent awareness and gang violence prevention, all are welcome to attend.

It is important for each and every one of us to know what is going on in our midst and know how we can help protect ourselves and others in our community. The presentation will be at PS 176, 120-45 235th St. in Cambria Heights, starting at 9:30 a.m. for breakfast and 10 a.m. sharp or the workshop, with free monitoring of young children during the workshop. We hope to see you there.

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