The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights

The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

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The Nation's Premier Civil and Human Rights Coalition

Youth PROMISE Act Will Help Communities Fight Youth Crime

May 14, 2009 - Posted by The Leadership Conference

A study last December from Northeastern University shows that youth crime may be rising, particularly among African-American youth, and that Congress has to do more to prevent kids and teens from becoming involved in violent crime and gang activity.

In February, both Democrats and Republicans, led by Rep. Bobby Scott, D. Va., introduced the Youth Prison Reduction through Opportunities, Mentoring, Intervention, Support, and Education (Youth PROMISE) Act in the House of Representatives and the Senate.  The Youth PROMISE Act provides funds to communities with the highest rates of crime and gang activity to each form a council of local leaders, such as representatives from law enforcement,  schools, and social service organizations, that will develop a plan for preventing young people in their community from joining gangs or engaging in criminal activity.

"I have long believed that the best way to reduce violence in this country is through prevention, and the Youth PROMISE Act does just that.  We must engage youth in positive ways through education, after school programs, sports, as well as family and community support to keep kids away from the dangers of gangs and other violent activities," said Rep. Mike Castle, R. Del., when the bill was introduced.

In this video submitted to 99Problems.org, a site where people can upload video testimonials about problems facing their communities, Joe Hill of Philadelphia explains why he sees a need for the Youth PROMISE Act in his community.

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