Public Works: Fighting Gangs, Guns, and Youth Violence | cityscape | Torontoist
August 24, 2012 Leave a comment
Patrick Metzger covers the recent report that London put out on the riots of last August. They came up with three main strategies for reducing youth violence: prevent kids from joining gangs by getting social workers involved with troubled youths in grade school; provide ways out for youths already in the gang lifestyle through education, family intervention, and job training; and arrest and punish those youth who refuse to leave the gang lifestyle. To accomplish these, London and other cities need money and inter-agency cooperation. Metzger compares London’s situation to that of Toronto, which has had a violent summer. He worries that these events may lead to a familiar cycle, where there is public uproar and some hasty measures taken, but over time the public grows apathetic and efforts wane until the next violent event. Crime, and particularly gang crime, is a major deterrent for families wanting to live in the city. While cities have done a great job of attracting young professionals, they are going to have trouble keeping them there once they start families if they don’t improve urban schools and reduce crime.