The city has received funding from the American Rescue Plan Act that will be used to expand violence intervention initiatives. Three million dollars of ARPA funds will be used by the Families, Parks and Recreation Department to provide evidence-based Community Violence Intervention in collaboration with the Orlando Police Department.
The overall goals of the program are to reduce homicides in Orlando as well as prevent incidents of gun violence among program participants by working with national experts using strategies that have reduced gun violence in other locations.
Work is based on research demonstrating that a fraction of one percent of people drive the majority of shootings and intervention should be focused on those at highest risk for shooting and being shot to steer them away from violence. These individuals will be referred to “Neighborhood Change Agents” who will intervene to disrupt situations where violence appears imminent and maintain daily contact with participants. The NCA’s will also serve as mentors, case managers and life coaches with the goal of pivoting participants away from circumstances that lead to violence and towards one of non-violent, economically and socially productive lives.
Orlando will contract with Advance Peace which has successfully helped decrease gun violence in multiple cities, including Richmond, California where shooting involving injury and death have decreased 82-percent since 2007. The Advance Peace model has shows success in Stockton, CA, Sacramento, CA and Fort Wayne, TX.
An independent evaluation will be carried out to measure the extent to which the CVI achieves its goals.