The Lead

Philly Mayor Kenney, City Council announce violence prevention hotline

By: - March 29, 2022 10:14 am

Philadelphia City Council President Darrell Clarke (Philadelphia Tribune photo).

By Brian Saunders

PHILADELPHIA — In conjunction with Philadelphia City Council, Mayor Jim Kenney partnered with the United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey and 211 Southeastern Pennsylvania (SEPA) to announce a new 24-hour violence prevention hotline.

By dialing 2-1-1, callers can access services related to gun-violence prevention in their neighborhoods. The hotline will offer real-time support seven days a week via phone call, text, email or website chat.

“In 2022, we continue to strive towards stronger collaboration and coordination across all our services, especially those dedicated to getting to the root of our gun violence crisis,” Kenney said. “Today is an important milestone in our fight against this crisis — one that will help save lives while connecting people to critical resources available in our communities. The creation of a Violence Prevention Hotline will enhance our ability to deliver needed services while also increasing our ability to get people to the resources and services they need in a timely fashion.”

The goal of the hotline is to reduce the likelihood of individuals engaging in violence by offering critical prevention and intervention services. Also, to connect those experiencing high levels of crime towards proper resources.

Resources will include:

  • Conflict intervention
  • Youth violence prevention
  • Peer counseling
  • Referrals to violence prevention community organizations
  • Neighborhood crisis mediation services
  • Workforce development and jobs Training programs
  • Behavioral health and crisis support services
  • Community support services (i.e. Community Life Improvement Program; Licenses and Inspections) for vandalism, graffiti, litter and vacant lots
  • After-school programming, mentoring and academic support services

“When people in our neighborhoods are exposed to violence, it can seem overwhelming, and they don’t know where to turn,” Council President Darrell L. Clarke said. “That’s why we need a one-stop-shop like this new Hotline. Call 2-1-1 — and whatever different kinds of services you need to keep you or your neighborhood safe, the City will connect you with the right person or agency to help you right away.”

Brian Saunders is a reporter for the Philadelphia Tribune, where this story first appeared. 

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