An excellent story of hope and progress reported by the Christian Science Monitor:
Despite spike in shootings, a Chicago community gets a handle on violence
When the relationship between law enforcement and crime-ravaged communities is adversarial, it can perpetuate a dangerous cycle. But in this community, residents and police have converged to bring tangible progress.
Even as it struggles with spates of violence like last weekend’s – more than 75 people were shot, with a dozen killed – Chicago has reduced the number of shootings since the spike in shootings in 2016. The South Side neighborhood of Englewood leads the way. It cut homicides and shootings by nearly twice the citywide rate. Last year it saw the lowest level of gun violence since police started keeping records in 1999, though violence persists. Law enforcement has played a role. Police reinvented how they deploy officers and work with the community. They use predictive data. But the real key to the reductions has been a joint effort by community members and police officers to target the places most dogged by violence. Mothers sit out on the most violent corners, and a coalition of organizations provides therapy and job training to the men most likely to shoot or be shot. Terrence Jackson enrolled in a job-training program that broke a cycle of jail and release. “A lot of guys can’t walk from block to block in their neighborhood,” Mr. Jackson says, because they can’t cross gang territories. “But here, we walk together.”