A coalition of community leaders has put forward a $3 million, 15-point plan — complete with timelines and budgets — in an effort to reduce violence in Madison.
Madison Mayor Paul Soglin, Alder Matt Phair, Boys and Girls Club of Dane County CEO Michael Johnson, members of the Black Leadership Council and other community leaders presented the plan at a 2:30 press conference today at the Madison Municipal Building.
“I feel a great sense of relief in that we have a community-based effort here led by real people,” Soglin said at the press conference.
In the wake of a spate of deadly shootings earlier this year, Johnson crafted a list of ideas to reduce violence. Phair and Cheeks also released a report on gun violence in the city and recommendations to reduce it. The plan merges those efforts, puts the 15 steps into a definitive timeline and projects expenditures for each point in the plan.
“We are doing away with all of these initiatives that are announced and then nothing happens,” said Minister Caliph Muab’El, executive director of Breaking Barriers Mentoring, Inc. at the press conference. “This is a group that is guaranteeing that we are going to pursue, we are going to follow up and we are going to hold people accountable in supporting our efforts.”
“We know that the community is hurting,” added James Morgan, co-founder of Madison Organizing in Strength, Equality and Solidarity (MOSES). “We know that we need to open up fresh lines of communication and to work as a coalition so that we all have safe communities.”
The 15 points of the plan are:
- Recruit and Train Peer Support Coaches for Violence Prevention
- Recruit and Train Peer Support Coaches for Recidivism Reduction
- Madison Peace Project
- Awards and Protection for Witnesses
- Youth Employment
- Create a Restoration Center
- Expansion of Community Center Hours
- Alternative Sentencing
- Mental Health Therapy
- Lobby for Policies that Address Social Determinants of Violence
- Remove Offenses on CCAP
- Court Advocacy
- Collaboration with MOST and the Madison Metropolitan School District
- Functional Family Therapy Parent Management Training
We will update this story after the conclusion of this afternoon’s press conference.