City of Cleveland's Youth Violence Prevention Plan
Earlier iterations of The Cleveland Plan focused more heavily on prevention, intervention, and enforcement. In this version, Cleveland’s Steering Committee broadened its view on the needs of the formerly incarcerated population, and have agreed to partner with the Cuyahoga County Office of Reentry and STANCE on this work (formerly the Comprehensive Anti-Gang Initiative).
The City of Cleveland has been engaged in community listening sessions since 2014. The meetings were led by the Cleveland Peacemaker’s Alliance, police, and faith and community leaders. Information gathered at these sessions has been integrated along with resident recommendations from other major initiatives, such as the Byrne Criminal Justice Initiative, Healthy Cleveland Initiative and Defending Childhood Initiative, and have provided valuable guidance and insight in the development of this plan.
The Plan also builds on the neighborhood-focused work of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development funded by the Stokes Greater Cleveland Consortium for Youth Violence Prevention, a community-based participatory research model initiated in 2007. The Cleveland Plan draws on previous local successes, emanating from the ongoing Comprehensive Anti-Gang Initiative (started in 2006), which is now named Stand Against Neighborhood Crime Everyday, operating under the umbrella of the office of the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio.
Core Principles & Plan Development
We believe the youth violence prevention programs currently being implemented have aided in the overall reduction of youth arrests seen over the past five years and will be key to regaining significant declines. However, youth violence prevention must be viewed through a comprehensive frame, including universal, selected, and targeted approaches cutting across multiple disciplines.
Creation of The Cleveland Plan, and participation in the National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention, has allowed for a more transparent information sharing process, linking programs into a continuum of service, and incorporating new and innovative strategies to effectively address the youth violence being experienced in our neighborhoods today.
The Cleveland Plan is anchored by three core principles:
- A multi-dimensional approach across disciplines, systems and levels (e.g. individual, family, schools, neighborhoods), spanning prevention, intervention and interdiction, and reentry.
- Strengthening existing evidence-based programs combined with the implementation of new promising and evidence-based programs that address gaps in services to our target population and support our core objectives.
- Support significant neighborhood-based input and data-driven decision-making.
Goals & Objectives
The following goals and objectives represent the core activities and programs of The Cleveland Plan, to provide services for youth ages 15 to 25:
Goal 1: Establish an accountable, transparent, and sustainable governance structure that provides collective decision-making regarding the reduction and prevention of youth violence.
Goal 2: Utilize a public health model to support a data-driven neighborhood-based violence prevention strategy.
Goal 3: Advance community and police relations through community empowerment, community skill building, police training, and proactive use of multi-disciplinary approaches to community problem solving.
Goal 4: Support community engagement with, and delivery of services for underserved and at-risk populations, particularly 15 to 25 year olds.
The Plan’s Steering Committee is convened by Mayor Frank Jackson. This committee will be housed in the City’s Community Relations Board and comprised of co-conveners from the City of Cleveland and Cuyahoga County local government; a Cleveland resident; a Juvenile Division judge; the Executive Director of Partnership for a Safer Cleveland; the Chief of the Cleveland Division of Police (CDP); and representatives from the media and corporate leadership.
The Steering Committee will meet quarterly to provide administrative leadership, the opportunity to review The Plan’s progress, and to set strategic assignments and direction.