The Boston City Council is hoping to get a jump start on preventing summer violence this year.
Councilors Kim Janey, Matt O’Malley and Andrea Campbell recently called for a hearing to combat summer violence.
The council held a similar hearing last June and according to Janey, the hearing did work on decreasing crime in the city. During the summer of 2018, there were 14 homicides compared to the summer of 2017, which had 22 homicides. Violence in general has been on the decline in the city. Between 2017 and 2018, the number of fatal and non-fatal shootings decreased from 260 to 202 according to the order for a hearing.
“It’s important to get working on this right away,” said Janey.
“With the summer approaching, every young person should be protected from gun violence, and violence of all kinds,” the hearing order reads.
The councilor believes violence is often a result of “unaddressed trauma” and the city needs to work on making sure there are resources for residents to deal with trauma. Also, she said there needs to be more resources for residents to prosper economically.
Janey said summer violence is often perceived as a youth issue but that is not always the case. According to her, often the victims of violence are adults.
“We have to make sure there is support for them as well,” she said.
Proud to introduce a hearing to combat the spike of violence during summer w/ my colleagues @MattOMalley & @CampbellforD4. Looking forward to partnering w/ peace activists, trauma support specialists, @bostonpolice, @HHSBOS, other agencies, & residents. #bospoli #increasetheprace pic.twitter.com/tigVMhwnJ2— Kim Janey (@Kim_Janey) May 15, 2019
O’Malley wants the hearing to happen before summer begins.
“We all know as the temperature rises, so does the crime rate in any city,” he said. “It will be a great opportunity to check in.”
Campbell said she is looking forward to the hearing.
Representatives from the Boston Police Department, Office of Public Safety, Boston Public Health Commission, the Boston Housing Authority, the Neighborhood Watch Unit, the Department of Youth Engagement and Employment, and community members will be invited to testify at the hearing.