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Mayor's Office Announces New Agency In Effort To Battle Violent Crime In Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- After several very violent, deadly days in Philadelphia, the Mayor's office announced a new city agency designed to stop it, and it'll take the city, grassroots groups and the community to make change.

Shootings in Philadelphia claimed the lives of three people and injured several others in 24 hours this weekend.

Shondell Revell is the Executive Director of city's newest agency announced Tuesday the Office of Violence Prevention.

"We all understand the task that is at hand and it's a daunting task," she said.

To date the city has clocked 168 homicides, which is up 20 percent from this date last year.

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Revell's job is to figure out what is the city is doing and whether it's working.

"Reducing the amount of violence, but also analyzing the programs we have and furthering the relationships in the community," she said.

The Office of Violence Prevention will also help coordinate the more than $60 million the city invests in programs across Philadelphia

Revell adds, "We have a lot of work to do, but I think this office could be a step in the right direction."

Marla Davis Bellamy runs the Philadelphia Ceasefire Program that responds to shootings as they happen.

They are just one of many groups working with law enforcement and the community to deal with the root cause.

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"We have a opiod task force, a bike lane task force, now we have one on gun violence," he said.

Councilman Kenyatta Johnson helped start the City Council's Gun Violence Prevention Task Force.

"We have a opiod task force, a bike lane task force, now we have one on gun violence," he said.

Johnson went door to door here near 21st and Fitzwater where one man died and others were injured over the weekend.

"All hands on deck, I mean we are in a crisis right now," he said.

So maybe together, the city, grassroots groups and the community can end the crisis by bringing the number of shootings down.

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