Youth Propose Ideas to Address Prevalence of Violence

As Rahm Emmanuel finalizes his first budget, and moves forward his initiatives to increase the number of beat cops, and a possible consolidation of police districts, youth from across the city, under the Leaders Investing For Equality (LIFE) Campaign, released a report, that investigates the relationship between safety and availability of after-school programs and called for the mayor to fulfill his campaign promise to increase resources toward after-school programs as a priority to reduce violence.

The study, Our Lives On the Line: Youth-Led Solutions to Violence in Chicago Neighborhoods, was conducted in four Chicago neighborhoods; Albany Park, Woodlawn, Little Village, and Kenwood/Oakland. In the study 120 youth between the ages 14-19 were interviewed and findings showed that over half of interviewed youth felt there was a strong police presence in their neighborhoods, yet only about 6 percent of youth felt safe. On the other hand over 90 percent of interviewed youth felt that having more after-school programs for youth would have a greater impact in making neighborhoods safe.

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