San Jose, CA: Needle-Moving Collaboratives Three-Year Follow-Up

04/27/2015 | 1.5 min |
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Summary

The Mayor's Gang Prevention Task Force has outlasted four mayors and six police chiefs. A key element in its longevity is its focus on community engagement, which it sees not only as strengthening its ability to address violent crime but also as motivating political leaders to support the effort.

This is a community issue that takes a community response.

Mario Maciel, Division Manager, Mayor's Gang Prevention Task Force

Focus: Violent crime

Founding date: 1991

Leadership (backbone): Mayor's Gang Prevention Task Force

Results at time of 2012 study: From 1991 to 2010 violent crime was reduced by 48 percent.

Most recent results: From 2011 to 2013 violent crime decreased by 3 percent.

San Jose's experience over the last three years: The oldest of the 11 collaboratives in our study, the Mayor's Gang Prevention Task Force has outlasted four mayors and six police chiefs. A key element in its longevity is its focus on community engagement, which it sees not only as strengthening its ability to address violent crime but also as motivating political leaders to support the effort. The city puts in $4 million a year to support the Task Force and to fund grants to community groups working with the Task Force on youth violence.

Among the Task Force's engagement strategies are community forums—which draw hundreds of residents—a subcommittee on community engagement, a faith community task force, at least two seats for residents on the Task Force Policy Team, and a crisis response meeting whenever there is a homicide.

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