Guardian Angels founder Curtis Sliwa is in Pittsburgh today, tomorrow and Sunday at the invitation of KDKA (1020) midday host Kevin Miller.
KDKA News Director Marshall Adams said Sliwa will visit several Pittsburgh-area neighborhoods to meet with community leaders and discuss forming local Guardian Angel chapters to patrol neighborhood streets.
In addition, Miller will host a live “town hall meeting” during Sliwa’s visit to the office of state Rep. Jake Wheatley, 2015 Centre Ave., Hill District.
No stranger to radio, Sliwa has co-hosted (with Ron Kuby) the morning drive show on New York’s WABC (770) since 1996.
Founded in 1979, Guardian Angels was originally formed to ride the New York City subways, report problems to police, and make citizens’ arrests for violent crimes. Chapters now exist in 60 cities internationally.
The group’s work has been controversial at times. Two Angels have been killed while on “safety patrols” — including one who was shot by a police officer in New Jersey — and former New York Mayor Ed Koch considered the group “vigilantes.” Toronto’s mayor and police chief still oppose the Angels in that city.
But other New York mayors like Rudy Giuliani and current Mayor Michael Bloomberg have supported its efforts. And the Angels have extended their volunteer efforts to offer educational and self-defense training programs
Lately the group, according to Sliwa, has been trying to counteract the “no snitch” mentality among inner-city teen-agers.
Other local meetings, according to Adams, will be held tonight at 7 at the Charleroi Borough municipal building, and tomorrow at 11 a.m. at the Foodland on Ninth Street in New Kensington. Sliwa will be on the South Side and in Homewood tomorrow evening.
In addition, a meeting for potential recruits will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday at PKA Karate Academy, 431 McNeilly Road, near the city’s border with Baldwin Township.