The Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce strongly supports the recommendations outlined in City Controller Laura Chick’s Blueprint for a Comprehensive Citywide Anti-Gang Strategy, which will shift oversight for all of the city’s anti-gang programs into the Mayor’s office. The L.A. Area Chamber also supports the three related City Council motions introduced by Councilmember Wendy Greuel to begin the consolidation, accountability and oversight process.
As a leading advocate for business in the region, the L.A. Area Chamber believes that reducing gang activity is critical to reclaiming our communities, especially young people, from the destructive cycle of crime and violence. Comprehensive reform of the city’s anti-gang strategy is also vital to improving our local economy and overall quality of life.
Together, the Chick report and Councilmember Greuel’s three motions lay the foundation to reform anti-gang programs in the city of Los Angeles. By consolidating the city’s anti-gang programs into a centralized unit in the Mayors Office, the first motion will make anti-gang programs transparent and accountable. The second motion, which calls for the development of measures to evaluate the effectiveness of anti-gang programs funded by the city, will help to improve program results. By requiring all anti-gang grants and contracts to be re-procured, the third motion will help to ensure that only programs with a proven record are funded by the city.
“Los Angeles is the epicenter of the nation’s gang problem, and we must act immediately to end the violence that is crippling our communities and our economy,” said Gary Toebben, President & CEO, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce. “The L.A. Area Chamber strongly supports Controller Laura Chick’s recommendations to reform the city’s anti-gang programs, and we applaud Councilmember Wendy Greuel for taking swift action to implement them.”
A long-time champion of education and workforce development programs that train and hire young people, the L.A. Area Chamber recognizes that a comprehensive regional approach is needed to quell gang violence. As a result, the Chamber will continue to lead the drive toward small schools and support the HIRE-LA jobs program, workforce readiness certification, job shadowing and Cash for College initiatives. In addition, the Chamber is working with job creators to identify career development and job opportunities for youth in at-risk communities.
The Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce represents the interests of business in L.A. County. Founded in 1888, the Chamber promotes a prosperous economy and quality of life in the Los Angeles region. For more information, visit www.lachamber.com.