Public Safety is possibly the most serious issues impacting residents in City Council District Eight. A key priority for Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson is shifting the narrative around public safety and implementing community policing programs to address systemic tensions between officers and residents. Another focus is highlighting the dangerous traffic conditions on many South LA streets and leveraging resources from the Department of Transportation to implement more traffic lights, stop signs and other forms of traffic control to ensure safe streets.
Community Safety Partnership
The goal of the Community Safety Partnership is to reduce and prevent violence, improve community-law enforcement relationships, and improve youth educational outcomes. Despite decades of oppressive tactics and over policing, Councilmember Harris-Dawson is leading the charge to create a new way for LAPD and residents to build safe communities. CSP officers will focus on community policing strategies to build trust between law enforcement and the community. By forming partnerships between LAPD and various community members, groups, and activists, residents and CSP officers have been able to collaborate on problem solving and create accountability. Overall, violent crimes at Harvard Park are down since the program began in 2016 and no homicides have occurred since the program launch.
Councilmember Harris-Dawson knows that in order to be successful the new CSP program must be responsive to the needs and voices of residents in Harvard Park and must rely on trust and strong partnerships among different stakeholders in government, social service, non-profit sectors, and especially community residents.
Community Safety Initiative
The Community Safety Initiative is an innovative 1 million dollar public safety program designed to disrupt and prevent gun violence in South Los Angeles. Councilmember Marqueece Harris Dawson brought this program to life in the form of prevention and intervention strategies that leverage existing programs and create new ones to support our communities as they deal with gun violence. The Community Safety Initiative represents a robust new approach to disrupt and prevent the gun-violence that traditionally occurs throughout South Los Angeles during the summer. Councilmember Harris-Dawson leads this collaborative effort with City Council Districts 9, 10 and 15 to reduce violent crime in our communities. The initiative consists of four prevention and intervention strategies that leverage and expand existing resources:
Councilmember Marqueece Harris-Dawson understands the real threats of gun-violence and need for community safety without over policing. Safe Passages adds community intervention workers familiar with the neighborhood and residents to ensure safe passages for youth and families to and from parks, schools and community spaces across South Los Angeles.
Understanding the stigma around mental health services in our communities and the lasting trauma of gun violence. Councilmember Harris-Dawson deployed preventative and responsive mental health services to assist neighborhoods dealing with trauma. 280 healing circles have been organized to prevent gun violence. 64 hours of responsive healing circles have responded to support individuals and communities impacted by gun-violence. Additionally, two heal the healer circles are planned to support the service providers serving the community.
Introducing young people to outlets for creativity and entrepreneurship is a proven tool for expanding their future opportunities. These workshops were inspired by Nipsey Hussle's legacy as an entertainer and social entrepreneur. Over 170 students across South LA will participate in 10 hours of training and learn business principals while exploring forms of creative expression. All of the workshops are designed to give students skills that promote self-esteem, empathy, stress reduction, anger management, academic improvement, and civic leadership.
Councilmember Harris-Dawson understands that many instances of violence occur in our communities in response to prior altercations. The Community Safety Initiative funds and leverages over 8,200 hours of Community Intervention work to intervene and disrupt conflicts before they escalate. These community mediators work with residents to de-escelate violent conflicts.