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Park Rangers to the Rescue

CATEGORY: In the News |
On Dec 27, 2014

DSC02101Park Rangers in Griffith Park have become increasingly rare over the last years. The number of Rangers has been cut from 60-plus at the turn of the century to only 18 today. We need more of them. Every possible opportunity should be taken to show support for what they do and to ask for more funding.

Rangers perform a multitude of services. They are ready and able for: patrol, security and enforcement, medical assistance, brush fire suppression, search and rescue, dispatch, education, community outreach, traffic management, signage, and emergency preparedness. They are one of our city’s best investments.

Our rangers know the park and are nearly always the first responders to fires and emergencies because they know it so well. On any given weekend they have little time to do anything beyond deployment from one situation to another. General patrol, interpretive, and resource management tasks : unfortunately : take a back seat to the emergencies.
Friends of Griffith Park applauds one of their new undertakings, a program for habitat protection. Just below Mt. Lee Drive, uninformed thrill seekers have been scaling a steep embankment, off-trail, causing horrific cumulative erosion. The remedy to discourage this bad behavior was to create a berm with a short stretch of woodcrete fencing in front of it. It’s not an impenetrable barrier, but combined with a habitat restoration sign, citing enforceable city code, the point is clear.

There are, no doubt, many other problematic short-cut trails in the park where this kind of resource management approach is needed. Native plant restoration projects and trail etiquette programs would be worthy supplements to this kind of effort. We need to protect the great gift of nature we have.

Our Park Rangers come to our rescue and the rescue of habitat on a daily basis. Now it’s time for us to come to the rescue of our rangers and ask the City Council and Mayor to restore funding for Park Rangers.



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