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Holistic approach to a safer Indy continues
new community focus from DPS

Building on Mayor Greg Ballard’s call for a holistic approach to crime reduction, the Department of Public Safety has launched a data-focused initiative to bring long-term positive change to some of Indianapolis’ most-challenged areas.
The effort is intended to help reduce crime and improve quality of life in six focus areas within the city. It will bring community leaders and City agencies together to create an action plan to reduce criminal activity and address root-cause issues.
“Much of the crime impacting neighborhoods in cities across America stems from societal failure to address decades-old social issues,” said Mayor Ballard. “In order to make our residents and neighborhoods safer, we must holistically address issues such as poverty, lack of quality education, lack of positive mentors and mental illness.  This effort will help us pinpoint the problems that are leading to criminal activity and address those issues to improve the quality of life for people living in our most challenged areas.”
The Department of Public Safety compiled crime and quality of life data from 2012 to 2014 to create this effort. Numerous non-profit and faith-based organizations, including Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF), City Mosaic, Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), The Polis Center, Ten Point Coalition and United Way have stepped forward to assist by sharing data, resources and expertise for the long-term improvement of the city. The Marion County Prosecutor’s Office and Marion County Sheriff’s Office are also partnering with the effort.
The initial six areas-of-focus, as identified by intersection, are at West 16th Street and North Tibbs Avenue, West 29th Street and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, West 34th Street and North Illinois Street, East 38th Street and North Sherman Drive, East New York Street and North Sherman Drive, and East 42nd Street and North Post Road.
“Crime and violence are effects, and we confront those effects every day through the work of the Department of Public Safety,” said Riggs. “We also have to deal with the causes and bring long-term change that will make Indianapolis an even better place to live for the next generation. We have citizens who deserve a better life and we need to work together as a community to address their needs.”
The first phase of the plan will see the formation of community engagement teams, which will work to assess and prioritize initial needs in the focus areas, including assistance with mental health issues and vacant housing.

Click here for complete information and data related to the effort.