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02/21/2012 03Bii Yakima Gang Free Initiative Update Q;,(+� rith. ,c " 1 _,. X1,5 r+'tR 'j S„J 1 ,,.: it BUSINESS OF THE CITY COUNCIL YAKIMA, WASHINGTON AGENDA STATEMENT Item No.-- I For Meeting of: February 21, 2012 r. .:,- . P�c ,N; , ,,� ,..:: ,.,., 1 tw N , w, ?, 'v ,, . 1 k . u` r t ' .: ..1 . ?, f r i ' ",, t�> nn•� ITEM TITLE: Update on Yakima Gang Free Initiative by Lt. Merryman SUBMITTED BY: Interim Chief Greg Copeland CONTACT Lt. Mike Merryman - 575 -6218 PERSON/TELEPHONE: SUMMARY EXPLANATION: Resolution Ordinance Other Report (specify) Contract: Mail to: Contract Term: Amount: Expiration Date: Insurance Required? No Funding Source: Phone. APPROVED FOR City Manager SUBMITTAL: ,I STAFF RECOMMENDATION: BOARD /COMMISSION RECOMMENDATION: ATTACHMENTS: Click to download ❑ Yakima Gang Free Initiative Update YAKIMA POLICE DEPARTMENT MEMORANDUM TO: Honorable Mayor and Members of the Yakima City Council Michael Morales, Interim City Manager FROM: Greg Copeland, Acting Police Chief Mike Merryman, Lieutenant DATE: February 21, 2012 SUBJECT: Yakima Gang Free Initiative Update Since the last City Council Update on the Yakima GFI, (October 18, 2011), the City of Yakima GFI Steering Committee and its sub - committee members completed work on the City of Yakima Gang Free Initiative Community Action Plan. The "Action Plan" is a product of the Yakima GFI which will serve as the City's blueprint to implement both short and long -term gang intervention and prevention strategies. Suppression activities, although not the focus of the effort, are also incorporated in the Action Plan and will remain the responsibility of the Yakima Police Department. The City of Yakima Gang Free Initiative was formally adopted as a City anti -gang strategy in April of 2010. Full implementation of the GFI occurred in October of 2010 with the hiring of our Yakima GFI consultant, Steve Magallan, with funding from the City. The City of Yakima GFI is based on the five core principles of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention's Comprehensive Gang Model. This model and other "Best Practices" are being used by communities across the country to effectively address gang crime and violence. As of this time we have completed the initial contract with Magallan Consultancy. Subsequent to your approval of a contract with Magallan Consultancy for limited technical assistance, the GFI is now working with the City to recruit applicants for the GFI Coordinator, to be hired as soon as possible. The RFQ for the Coordinators position was released on February 2 with a close date of February 27 Our goal is to have the Coordinator in place, under contract, no later than April 1, 2012. GFI Plan & the Future The City of Yakima GFI Community Action Plan was completed and adopted by the GFI Advisory Group on February 2nd. The Action Plan is designed to meet the goals and objectives of the City of Yakima related to the reduction of gang crimes and violence as well as associated youth problem behaviors. The corner stone of the GFI Action Plan will be the development of a Youth and Family Development Center, (YFDC). Certain components of the GFI Action Plan will occur at the YFDC. A Yakima Truancy Center, Referral and Screening, Individual Needs Assessments, Outreach and other related 1 prevention and intervention activities will take place in or out of the YFDC. It should be noted that it is not intended that the GFI or the City will be providing the services of the GFI Action Plan. But rather, the GFI in collaboration with local stakeholders and service providers will work to develop a coordinated approach to the delivery of gang prevention and intervention efforts in the City. Additionally, the GFI organizing and policy development body, formerly called the "Steering Committee," has evolved into a new phase of development more focused on advisory activities. As such, the GFI "Advisory Group" will now take the place of the former steering committee. Staff Assignments and Resources Lt. Mike Merryman with the Police Department is still serving in the capacity of GF1 director with Steve Magallan fulfilling the duties of GFI consultant. Council member Maureen Adkison is serving as the GFI Advisory Group chair. Council members Kathy Coffey and Dave Ettl are also serving on the Advisory Group. The GFI's next staff move will be the identification and hiring of our "coordinator," who will succeed Steve Magallan. Funding for this position is in the budget process. Options on the table at this point in time include possible grant funding or funding via the City of Yakima. Recent GFI Related Activities The Yakima GFI is receiving more recognition as time goes on as a player in the anti - gang effort. Our coordinated efforts with local gang initiatives have resulted in a much closer relationship with the Yakima County Gang Commission, with the YCGC giving much credit to the Yakima GFI as leaders in our community. It is anticipated that the approach to the development of our Action Plan will be utilized by the County and other municipalities to address their gang issues. Next Steps At this time the Request for Qualifications for the GFI Coordinator is open. The City will provide administrative oversight for the hiring of the GFI Coordinator, which we hope to have in place by April 1, 2012. Funding for the GFI Coordinator was provided by the City of Yakima. Also on the table at this time is the additional funding from the City in the amount of $140,000.00. At this time we are beginning to develop some preliminary budget suggestions for these funds. However, with the hiring of the Coordinator and the release of the GFI Action Plan, it has been recommended that we move carefully to ensure this funding is most effectively put to use. Lastly, it should be noted that an anti -gang strategy as comprehensive and complex as the Yakima GFI is expected, in the short term, to take 12 -18 months to complete. The long- term vision of curbing the level of gang crime and violence in Yakima, due to a lack of 2 interest in our youth to join a gang, will likely be realized in 5 year increments. That being said, the initial stages in gang crime and violence reduction will necessarily remain the responsibility of those service providers providing suppression activities. For that reason, the recent move to enhance the staffing of the Yakima Police Department is a key component to the short -term goals related to reducing gang crime and violence. Summary: The effort to address gang crime and violence in the City of Yakima and make our community safer has been multi- faceted involving members of the community and representatives of our social network, and has required a clear long -term vision and commitment on what needs to be done to make that happen. The role of those involved in this effort has been and will continue to primarily be that of "Vision Casters" and policy setters. The proposed GFI framework outlines the structure in which an Advisory Group will operate to carry out the direction of the Council, to "Reduce gang related crimes and activity within the City of Yakima." 3