Organizations, Police and Community Working to Stem Teen Violence in Syracuse Youth and Crime Increasing

Some teens in the area are at risk of joining gangs or being a victim of gang violence.

Public Safety Chairman Steven Thompson says that these incidents are traditionally retaliatory in nature.

“One incident sparks another incident, which sparks another incident, which sparks another one.”

Thompson says that if a student lives in a neighborhood where someone was shot or shot at, the school will get the kids together to discuss what happened and the consequences moving forward.

“So there’s lots of things that are being worked on, but it’s whether or not people take advantage of them.”

Thompson said that there is only so much that can be done locally— and that gun regulations at the national level could help limit these crimes.

Meghan Fitzpatrick, N-C-C News.

Syracuse, N.Y. (NCC News) — Before students get let out of school and rush into the Boys and Girls Club, Executive Director Patrick Driscoll types away at his desk. Like Common Councilor Steven Thompson, Driscoll said he has noticed an increase of children and teens being victims and suspects of violent crimes in the area.

When there is an incident, people with information regarding any acts of violence must step forward, according to Driscoll.

“You may have some people say it’s not my problem,” Driscoll said. “Unfortunately, it’s the community’s problem.”

Driscoll said that people speaking out and sharing information is one of the most important steps towards a solution, and that people may not come forward out of fear of retribution.

Thompson said that kids committing acts of gang-related violence don’t understand how they can lose 15 years of their own life too.

The Boys and Girls Club in Syracuse put support systems in place for members who have experienced trauma, and they work to make a smooth transition from school to the club for students.

Thompson says that Syracuse schools work closely with students that are at risk of joining gangs. Also, the police will inform the school if a student lives in an area that was shot or shot at so that the student may receive the proper accommodations he or she needs, according to Thompson.

The Boys and Girls Club provides kids in the area with after-school activities that keeps kids on a positive track, according to Driscoll.

Reported by

Meghan Fitzpatrick

Meghan Fitzpatrick is a Broadcast and Digital Journalism student at Syracuse University. She is and associate producer for Syracuse Unpeeled, an entertainment news show at Citrus TV, and she is on the executive board of WJPZ Radio.

Other stories by Meghan Fitzpatrick

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