Mayor Hodges Tackles Youth Violence Prevention at National Forum
Addresses Administration’s Strategies to Combat Violence on Key Panel  
May 12, 2015 (MINNEAPOLIS) Today Mayor Betsy Hodges participated in the Fourth National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention in Washington, D.C. as part of her ongoing effort to improve outcomes for young people of color—a critical piece of her initiative to foster inclusive growth to build One Minneapolis.
Since 2012, Minneapolis has been a federally-designated National Forum city, as part of the city’s ongoing commitment to youth violence prevention. Read more here.
Attorney General Loretta Lynch and Education Secretary Arne Duncan were also in attendance.
The Mayor spoke on a panel about the challenges and strategies leaders face when prioritizing youth violence prevention efforts in their cities. She addressed the need to get in front of problems before they happen and gain support from sectors across the community.
“In Minneapolis, we know that youth ages 18-24 are at significantly increased risk for firearm-related assault injuries,” said Mayor Hodges. “We’ve seen a reduction in incidents but it is critical that we continue to invest in prevention and intervention practices to ensure we keep moving in the right direction. If we don’t direct youth away from violence toward vitality, our vitality and growth as a whole is impacted.”
The Mayor discussed the following efforts that her administration has undertaken:
·         Youth Violence Prevention Initiative: a mix of public health and enhanced law enforcement strategies to better address the root causes of violence and significantly reduce and prevent youth violence.
·         My Brother’s Keeper: aims to fully include boys and young men of color in cities’ success and in America’s promise. It focuses on education outcomes, employment and public safety.
·         Cities United: a national collective of cities committed to reducing violence and violent deaths among young African American men.
·         Promise Zone:  a comprehensive, community-driven revitalization strategy that builds on and aligns numerous initiatives to address the persistent unemployment, crime, housing blight, and poor educational outcomes.
·         Juvenile Justice Reform: Minneapolis is receiving technical assistance to increase public safety and improve outcomes for youth through juvenile-justice reform.
She was joined on the panel by mayors from Camden, NJ, Oakland, CA, and Salinas CA.
In April Mayor Hodges worked with mayors from across the country to reduce violence and violent deaths among young African American men at the 2nd annual Cities United convening in Philadelphia. Read more here.
Also in April, the Mayor was thrilled by the Obama Administration’s announcement that Minneapolis was awarded a Promise Zone designation. The designation, which aims to revitalize high-poverty communities across the country, will have a focus on youth violence prevention and intervention practices. Read more here
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Published May 12, 2015

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