Since taking office in 2010, the Landrieu Administration moved quickly to take on the top issues facing New Orleans and we have seen tremendous progress. Still, many daunting challenges remain and we cannot continue to kick the can down the road.
In 2012, 193 people were murdered in New Orleans. 193 tragic stories and a wake of destruction and heart break. There is no challenge more urgent than preventing murder and make no mistake, it can be fixed. We believe there is an answer to this age old problem.
Our answer is NOLA FOR LIFE. In the spring of 2012 Mayor Landrieu launched this cutting edge comprehensive strategy as one of the city’s top priorities. It’s smart, holistic, and hits the streets.
From prevention and intervention to enforcement and rehabilitation, we are fighting back to protect our families and make every person in New Orleans feel safe:
- · Nationally, in 2012 violent crime and murder was on the rise, while in New Orleans overall crime and murder was down.
- · Eight months through 2013, murder is down about 25 percent compared to 2012, and down about 26 percent compared to the first eight months of 2011.
- · To date, the NOPD-led Multi-Agency Gang Unit has indicted 74 individuals from seven gangs as part of a coordinated multi-jurisdictional effort to focus on group and gang activity.
- · Two dozen identified at-risk individuals have taken advantage of job placement, job training, GED preparation, housing assistance, emergency financial assistance, child care, substance abuse counseling, and/or mental health counseling as part of the Group Violence Reduction Strategy.
- · The Mayor’s 2013 NOLA Youth Works Summer Jobs Program provided 1,600 young people ages 13-21 with work experience at private companies, non-profit organizations and other entities.
- · Midnight Basketball’s 4th season ended in August 2013 with over 1,000 participants. Over five dozen participants were connected with jobs, job training, or education.
- · NOLA FOR LIFE days have engaged nearly a thousand citizens to clean up crime hot spots, reduce blight, and improve infrastructure.
- · In March 2013, The Central City WIC Clinic started screening for family violence and referring those who screen positive to the New Orleans Family Justice Center for help.
- · NOLA FOR LIFE programming runs 24/7 on Cox Cable Channel 99. The content highlights the strategy, the success of our initiatives, and gives voice to people in the community who are working to change the culture of violence.
- · The City regularly convenes a diverse group of service providers, supported by the NOLA FOR LIFE Fund, to network, coordinate programming, and identify policy barriers to improve service delivery for high-risk individuals.
- · CeaseFire mediates conflicts in order to prevent violence, and as of mid-October 2013, the Central City target area has seen over 200 days without a murder.
While we are seeing results, it is not nearly good enough.
Together we must do more. Ending murder in New Orleans will not be easy and it won’t happen overnight. We each have to play our part. Our city found or made a way when we have taken on tough challenges before and we must do it again.
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