CHICAGO –Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle were joined by community and business leaders today as they highlighted activities of the Community Anti-violence and Restoration Effort (CARE) collaboration between the City and County, businesses and local communities for the prevention, intervention and response to the many risk factors that destabilize communities and contribute to violence.
“Violence is one of the most difficult and painful challenges we face as a city,” said Mayor Emanuel. “There is no simple or easy solution, but by working together with County government, business leaders and community groups, we have been adopting the best practices to address the systemic causes of violence and to ensure we are making our neighborhoods and communities safe for everyone.”
“This effort is about stabilizing our communities and making them safer places to live and work,” President Preckwinkle said. “Policing alone will not address the social issues that face our communities. Through CARE, neighborhoods and businesses are partnering with government to coordinate resources and effectively respond to violence.”
As part of the CARE initiative, a number of anti-violence and prevention strategies have launched during the past year, including “wrap-around” programs that prevent crime from returning to street corners after police clear drug markets and “One Summer Chicago,” which provide jobs and activities for children and at-risk youth.
The City of Chicago is creating three new re-engagement centers designed to return high school dropouts to the school system and adopting policy reforms to review all youth murders to determine where programs and policies could have worked to prevent the death. Cook County continues to develop community-based alternatives to detention, enhanced pre-trial services and aftercare services for juvenile ex-offenders.
The re-engagement centers will serve as a location for families and youth seeking to re-enroll in school and get access to other supportive services. Centers are starting in three communities that have experienced high drop-out rates - Garfield Park, Englewood and Little Village.
For each strategy, the City and County will jointly dedicate resources to manage the effort, seek public and private funding to test the approach, and eventually allocate funds to expand the most effective and successful strategies.
Many businesses have provided financial support and or allowed employees to contribute their professional expertise to the initiative as part of their responsibilities. These include The Allstate Corporation, Bain & Company, Burrell Communications, Civic Consulting Alliance, DLA Piper LLP (US), Ernst & Young LLP, IBM Corporation, McDonald's Corporation, N'DIGO MAGAPAPER, Perkins Coie, LLP and the University of Chicago Crime Lab.
“Safety is a basic right that must be provided to all Chicagoans” said Thomas J. Wilson, Allstate’s chairman, president and chief executive officer. “It is also necessary to create vibrant, prosperous communities. The Community Anti-violence and Restoration Effort ( CARE) is designed to unite all members of our local neighborhoods to create safe and vital communities where everyone is free to prosper and enjoy our wonderful city.“
The CARE initiative focuses on the following strategies:
Community-based prevention. Promotes positive behaviors and prevents the risk factors that destabilize communities by taking action to reduce gun violence, fostering strong families, and providing more jobs.
Youth intervention. Intervene with youth who are at greater risk to re-engage students in school, offer more choices out-of-school, and instill the social and emotional skills youth need to deal with stress peacefully.
Response. Improve response after a violent incident to distinguish high-risk segments, help low-risk defendants get services rather than go to jail, and connect offenders leaving prison to services so they don't return to crime.
CARE is already at work in many communities.
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