Samples Gun Control Youth Firearms Violence Initiative

Youth Firearms Violence Initiative

328 words 2 page(s)

The Youth Firearms Violence Initiative was developed in response to the significant increase in violent criminal acts committed by juveniles during the last part of the 20th century. There was concern that the youth violence rate was increasing at a much faster rate than its adult counterpart, and that handguns were the weapon of choice for this demographic (Hess et al., 2012). The initiative was created by the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services and provided $1 million to ten cities that were most affected by the increase in violent crime rates (Hess et al., 2012). Different development strategies and tactics were used, tailored slightly to the needs of each of the cites in the program, roughly grouped into four main areas: street-based activities, school-based activities, community-based activities, and GIS and crime analysis. Each of these served a distinct purpose to provide a holistic approach to tackling this issue.

One of the strategies implemented in Baltimore, for example, was the development of a curfew enforcement team. This focused on targeting students who were chronically truant and therefore more at risk of engaging in violence (Dunworth, 2000). Baltimore saw one of the highest increases in arrests and guns seized, with 88 guns being captured from youths particularly. The reason that this increase occurred is likely because of the development of a dedicated unit aimed at targeting this demographic: it has been shown to be more effective than using standard officers on a rotating basis (Dunworth, 2000). Traditional enforcement tactics were not shown to have an effect on reducing the youth firearm violence rate, even when deployed as part of this program. Proactive arrest policies, however, were one of the most effective ways of reducing this rate in the cities that employed the program, and significantly reduced the number of gun-related crimes by juveniles.

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    References
  • Dunworth, T. (2000). National Evaluation of the Youth Firearms Violence Initiative. Retrieved from https://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED452466
  • Hess, K. M., Orthmann, C. H., & Wright, J. P. (2012). Juvenile Justice. Cengage Learning.

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