Youth Violence Task Force Platform Released Yesterday!

The El Barrio/East Harlem Youth Violence Task Force released its official platform yesterday, following more than a year of community discussions and meetings with young people. The Task Force, organized by Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito, was founded after the Council Member and community groups noticed a growth in neighborhood violence among the youth.  It is a diverse collaborative of youth and community organizations that aims to directly involve young people in the development of positive alternatives to gang and gun violence.  The platform is available for download here.

(c) William Alatriste New York City Council

The press conference unveiling the platform was held outside the Johnson Community Center, which has been in the works for over 10 years as an important resource for our community’s youth, but still has not been opened.  Senator Jose Serrano, Council Member Jumaane Williams and local youth and community groups were all on hand to support the work of the Task Force.   The platform calls for collective action on the part of government, law enforcement, non-profits, youth, parents, schools, and the community as a whole to address the recent rise in youth violence.

The recommendations, which derive from ideas that were shared during a series of community discussions and other gatherings of local youth, revolve around seven key areas:

  1. Outreach to High Risk Youth
  2. Improving Police/Community Relations
  3. Extracurricular Youth Programming
  4. Youth Employment
  5. Investments in Public Education
  6. Parental Involvement
  7. Youth Empowerment.

Some specific recommendations include: introducing the “Violence Interrupters” Model in El Barrio/East Harlem, which has helped to prevent shootings and retaliatory violence among youth in other communities, successfully re-opening the James Weldon Johnson Center, reinstating the New York Midnight Basketball program, and leveraging the Young Men’s Initiative funds for workforce development.

This platform is only the beginning.  To learn more about the work ahead, please contact Elsie Encarnacion at or 212-828-9800.


3 thoughts on “Youth Violence Task Force Platform Released Yesterday!

  1. Hi I total agree with all the plan our council have ,more programs, more job , keep them involved with thing that is done in the community such as events, have them lead program instead of adults train if have to so that they feel important by been in charged.They are the future I feel so bad when I hear that a youth is killed or got arrrested like those two 12 years kid.the 16 old kid that was shooting that one shot went to our council car thanks GOD nothing happen, I am here to help out with what ever your need me .I don’t live in a barrio but I will travel in orde to help save the YOUTH,, They are the FUTURE…Thanks & have a great Day.. Martina Garcia Youth Put your Guns Down’! & Your Pants Up!!!!Stop The Violence!!!!

  2. Thank you Melissa and those who to make the Youth Violence Task force Report possible. It is exactly what we need.

    When I am done reading the whole document I will probably have more in depth comments.
    Graciano Matos

  3. Thank you Melissa for being ONE of so few that Truely Fight for our Youth.
    We need more people to help in this fight you have a great crew behind you; count me in where possible.

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