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City Leaders Announce Coordinated Initiatives Aimed At Reducing Violence In Baltimore

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- Baltimore City leaders announced this week several coordinated initiatives aimed at reducing violence in Baltimore.

City leaders said the initiatives are developed in close coordination with state and federal partners and are guided by a collective Group Violence Reduction Strategy (GVRS).

GVRS is an evidence-based approach that is proven to reduce serious violence while expanding opportunity and building better relationships between community and law enforcement, according to city leaders.

The first initiative announced is a Request for Proposal (RFP).

The RFP aims to develop a robust programmatic response to support underserved high-risk adults to help them stay safe and out of prison and provide an opportunity to reach a variety of personal goals, develop prosocial connections and build self-sufficiency and confidence.

"This Request for Proposal represents my administration's commitment to a comprehensive response to violence," Mayor Jack Young said. "By focusing this RFP on providing extensive supports to people over 25-years-old, we are strategically building on our existing investments in Roca and Safe Streets to ensure all individuals at the highest risk of involvement in violence have access to the resources and opportunities to not only stay safe and alive but also to thrive."

The next initiative is the Baltimore Community Intelligence Centers (BCICs).

The BCICs provide a mechanism for interagency coordination that builds on existing collaboration between city, state and federal partners.

By incorporating staff from the State's Attorney's Office at the district level, BCICs will provide the physical infrastructure to convene all GVRS law enforcement and community partners, city leaders said.

The final initiative is a technical assistance package tailor-made to Baltimore's needs to support all aspects of planning, implementation and evaluation of the GVR Strategy, city leaders said.

The technical assistance team, which will have Baltimore-based staff, will be led by renowned expert Dr. Anthony Braga of Northeastern University.

City leaders said this technical assistance will ensure GVRS is implemented correctly, focuses on the people most connected to cycles of violence and is grounded in principles of procedural justice and transparency.

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