San Bernardino is bolstering violence prevention efforts with $750,000 in federal coronavirus relief funds.
This week, city leaders increased service agreements with HOPE Culture and Young Visionaries Youth Leadership Academy by $250,000 each, and approved a new $250,000 pact with Operation New Hope to help reduce crime and the recidivist.
The measures come eight months after the city council committed $1 million in US bailout money to the cause.
What to do with the remaining $250,000 will be decided at a later date.
Together, HOPE Culture, Young Visionaries and now Operation New Hope will provide support services to high-risk groups through the city’s Violence Response Program, a collaboration of community groups, schools and communities. others who use a multi-pronged approach to reduce crime in the city.
According to statistics provided to elected officials this week, as of the end of last year, San Bernardino had seen a 40% reduction in homicides since the beginning of the year resulting from conflicts between groups, which the city defines as gangs of branding or young people in the neighborhood who form organically. Additionally, the city ended 2021 with 28 group-related homicides, up from 47 the previous year.
Since the violence intervention program was introduced more than three years ago, group-related homicides have fallen by 16%, the data shows.
Service providers supported 159 people last year, while 80% of all program participants remain free from arrest and have not experienced gun violence, according to the city.
Service coordination meetings, home visits and community engagement events contribute to the goal.
Strengthening violence response efforts, policymakers said last year, should improve and help ensure security.