ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) – The Conkey Cruisers had to end their season early this year after increased drug traffic, and they are calling on the government to do something.
For eight years, the Conkey Cruisers have biked El Camino trail in the city of Rochester. The group gets families out of the house and keeps them active during the summer months.
Founder Theresa Bowick says, once a Conkey Cruisers always a Conkey Cruisers.
Over 100 children are enrolled in her program, but she says increased drug problems in the area have made it unsafe for her kids.
“We have to actually scour the park before the kids come out because there’s typically needles in the park. There’s times when there is a lot of drug sales on along the trail. And we can’t even get the kids through on their bicycle,” said Bowick.
She is calling on Governor Cuomo and President Donald Trump to enforce the Conkey Rule.
“Any organization that is using federal or state funds to distribute needles that those organizations also be responsible for picking up at least 25 percent of the needles that they distribute,” said Bowick.
One local group is already taking steps to do just that.
Trillium Health has a Syringe exchange program. In a statement they said:
“This is a complex community problem and we are working hard to be part of the solution. From linking people to health care to providing community education and Narcan training to providing resources for safe needle collection, including most recently establishing needle disposal kiosks at three City locations, we are deeply committed to making a positive impact.”
Conkey Cruisers is also looking at another way to tackle the drug problem.
They are reaching out to local organizations including fraternities and sororities to start a campaign called ‘Cover this Corner with Love’.
“If we put something positive on every single intersection where there’s drug trafficking going on, now we got something positive and those things will have to go away because they can’t co-exist in such a positive environment,” said Bowick.
Bowic says she has seen a lot of kids going through her program and would hate to end the Conkey Cruiser because of drugs and crime.