Councilmember McElhaney Blasts Mayor for Failing to Fund Violence Reduction


Calling for a new  “Department of Violence Prevention (DVP),” City Councilmember Lynette Gibson blasted Mayor Libby Schaaf”s budget for proposing millions in additional spending on enforcement without any new investment in community-led strategies.”

In a email statement distributed Monday, titled “We Deserve Better,” McElhaney criticized the Schaaf adminstration for opposing the Department of Violence Prevention, which is sponsored by McElhaney and Councilmember Larry Reid.

“Over the past two years, the Schaaf administration has spent millions (of dollars) to staff two new departments – the Department of Transportation and the Office of Animal Services – but now holds the DVP to a different standard.  This is outrageous and offensive,” wrote McElhaney.

                       Lynette Gibson-McElhaney

According to the councilmember’s statement, Schaaf’s “budget proposal increases funding for law enforcement, but fails to make any recommendations for new interventions to dramatically reduce shootings & homicides, domestic violence or to strategically address the commercial sexual exploitation of our children. She clearly does not hear the pain in our community.”

“In establishing the DVP, the Council sets a bold vision for public safety: to reduce homicides by 80 percent and attain an 80 percent clearance rate within the next three years,” she wrote.

“This ambitious goal sends a clear signal to the community, OPD and partnering organizations that the Council expects the City Administrator to direct resources and strategies in a manner that produces dramatic safety gains.

The proposal to established a Department of Violence Prevention was discussed at council committee meeting this week and is scheduled for the City Council meeting on Tuesday, May 16.


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