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Applauding a Comprehensive Approach to Combatting Youth Exposure to Violence

May 27, 2011
Attorney General Eric Holder today commended the city of Minneapolis’ Youth Violence Prevention Initiative for their successful efforts to reduce youth violence in the community the past three years.  The initiative, which began in 2008 as a response to stem the rising tide of youth violence in Minneapolis, has played a vital role in significantly decreasing the number of youths involved in violent crime, as well as improving the Minneapolis Public Schools graduation rate over a five year period.  At the conference Attorney General Holder said:
 “This conference provides a critical opportunity to highlight, to celebrate, and – hopefully – to replicate, the extraordinary progress that’s been made under Minneapolis’s “Blueprint for Action” strategy.  It’s also our chance to reaffirm our shared commitment to strengthening our approach to addressing one of the greatest public safety – and public health – epidemics of our time: children’s exposure to violence.”
 The initiative is guided by the goals laid out in the “Blueprint for Action” which created a comprehensive, collaborative and public health approach to address youth violence in Minneapolis.  The goals are:
  1. To connect every youth to a trusted adult;
  2. To intervene at the first sign that youth are at risk of violence;
  3. To restore youth who have gone down the wrong path; and
  4. To unlearn the culture of violence in the community. 
Statistics indicate that this approach has helped lead to safer youth and safer communities, including a 56 percent decrease in the number of youth arrested or suspected for violent crime since 2006 and a 58 percent drop in the number of incidents involving guns and youth during that same period.  In 2010, citywide violent crime in Minneapolis dropped to a 28-year low. Click here to read the Attorney General's full remarks from today's event.

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